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Full text of "Journals of the Rev. Messrs. Isenberg and Krapf, missionaries of the Church missionary society, detailing their proceedings in the kingdom of Shoa, and journeys in other parts of Abyssinia, in the years 1839, 1840, 1841, and 1842"

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W^YNE  s.  yUCINlCH^  ': 




A  ^ 


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i^    ^A    /     •-^-isi 

JOURNALS  '•-^'  l>y 

OF    THE 

Rev.  Messrs.  ISENBEEG  AND  KRAPF, 





IN    THE    YEARS    18-39,  1840,  1841,  AND  1842. 




missionaries'    JOURNALS,    AND    THE    EXPEDITION 

OF    THE    PACHA.   OF    EGYPT    UP    THE    NILE. 






The  operations  of  the  Church  Missionary  Society  iu 
Abyssinia  commenced  in  the  year  1829.  The  Rev. 
Samuel  Gobat  and  the  Rev.  Christian  Kugler,  the  first 
Protestant  Missionaries  who  entered  that  country,  landed 
at  Massowah  in  Dec.  1829.  They  were  favourably  re- 
ceived by  Sebagadis,  the  then  Ras  of  Tigre.  Mr.  Ku- 
gler  was  removed  by  death  just  one  year  after  his  land- 
ing at  Massowah :  he  died  in  the  expression  of  lively 
faith  in  the  Redeemer,  and  of  a.  good  hope  through  grace, 
on  Dec.  29,  1830.  Mr.  Kugler^s  place  iu  the  Mission 
was  supplied  by  the  Rev.  Charles  William  Isenbei'g, 
who  reached  Adowah,  in  Tigre,  in  April,  1835.  He 
was  followed  by  the  Rev.  Charles  Henry  Blumhardt  in 
the  beginning  of  1837,  and  by  the  Rev.  John  Ludwig 
Krapf  at  the  close  of  that  year. 

In  the  beginning  of  1830  Mr.  Gobat  proceeded  to 
Gondar,  the  capital  of  Amhara,  where  he  was  kindly 
received  and  protected  by  Oubea,  then  exercising  chief 



authority  in  that  part  of  Abyssinia.*  In  1836  Mr.  Go- 
bat  was  compelled  by  ill  health  to  quit  the  Mission. 

Early  in  1838  ojiposition  to  the  Mission  was  excited 
by  the  priesthood  of  the  Abyssinian  Chiu'ch^  fomented 
by  certain  members  of  the  Church  of  Rome  who  had 
entered  the  country.  The  result  was,  that  the  Mission- 
aries were  obliged  to  quit  Abyssinia,  Oubea  declaring 
that  he  was  not  able  to  resist  their  enemies  any 

On  quitting  Abyssinia,  Messrs.  Isenberg  and  Blum- 
hardt  proceeded  to  Cairo.  jNIr.  Krapf  being  unwilling 
to  relinquish  the  hope  of  re-entering  Abyssinia  from 
another  quarter,  determined  to  make  the  attempt  to  do 
so  by  Zeila,  which  lies  without  the  Straits  of  Babel- 
raandeb,  in  lat.  11°  20'  north,  long.  43°  50'  east.  He 
was  led  to  contemplate  this  attempt  in  consequence  of 
the  Missionaries,  while  at  Adowah,  ha\dng  been  imdted 
by  the  King  of  Shoa  to  visit  his  country.  ]\Ir.  Krapf 
accordingly  proceeded  to  Mocha,  where  he  arrived  on 
the  28th  of  May,  1838.  Here  he  met  ■mih.  a  servant 
of  the  King  of  Shoa,  who  encouraged  him  to  prosecute 
the  design  which  he  had  formed,  and  gave  him  much 
iufonuation  as  to  the  best  method  of  proceeding  from 
Zeila  to  the  capital  of  the  King  of  Shoa.  From  Mr. 
Naylor,  the  British  Consul  at  Mocha,  Mr.  Krapf  met 
with  a  friendly  reception,    and  the  promise  of  every 

*  The  result  of  Mr.  Gobat's  residence  in  Abyssinia  was  published  in 
1834,  in  a  volume  entitled  ".Journal  of  a  Three  Years' Residence  in  Abys- 
sinia, in  furtherance  of  the  objects  of  the  Church  Missionary  Society." 


assistance  in  liis  power.  While  he  was  employed  in 
collecting  information  at  Mocha,  he  was  attacked  by 
dysentery;  which  reduced  him  so  low,  that  he  was 
compelled  to  retm-n  to  Cau'o,  where  he  arrived  on  the 
27th  of  September,  1838. 

Mr.  Isenberg  and  Mr.  Krapf  now  seriously  delibe- 
rated on  their  futiu*e  course ;  and  came  to  the  conclu- 
sion jointly  to  engage  in  an  attempt  to  reach  Shoa  by 
way  of  Zeila  and  Hurrm*.  Should  they  fail  in  their 
object  with  regard  to  Shoa,  it  was  their  purpose  to 
make  their  way,  if  possible,  to  the  tribes  of  Heathen 
Gallas,  which  are  spread  over  the  country  to  the  south- 
ward and  eastward  of  Shoa. 

Colonel  Campbell,  then  British  Consul-General  at 
Cairo,  prociu-ed  for  the  Missionaries  a  firman  from  the 
Pacha  of  Egypt.  He  also  gave  them  letters  to  the 
Consul  at  Mocha,  and  to  the  King  of  Shoa,  strongly 
recommending  the  Missionaries  to  then*  protection  and 
favour.  Mr.  Gliddon,  the  United  States'  Consul-Gene- 
ral at  Cairo,  gave  them  a  letter,  recommending  them  to 
the  friendly  offices  of  all  captains  of  United  States' 
vessels  with  whom  they  might  meet. 

Thus  aided  and  encom-aged,  they  started  on  their 
arduous  undertaking.  jNIr.  Krapf  thus  concluded  a 
letter  from  Caii-o  to  the  Secretaries  of  the  Chui'ch  Mis- 
sionaiy  Society,  Jan.  20,  1839  :  "  May  the  Lord  of  Sa- 
baoth  be  our  guide,  our  preserver,  our  strength,  our 
light,  and  our  life  1" 

From   Mocha   they  crossed  to  the   opposite  coast, 


passed  the  straits  of  Babelmandeb,  and  on  the  4th  of 
April  arrived  at  Tadjurra,  which  they  found  preferable 
to  Zeila  as  a  point  of  departure  to  the  interior.  After 
encountering  the  many  difficulties  which  embarrass 
travellers  in  these  unfrequented  regions,  they  reached 
the  frontier  of  the  kingdom  of  Shoa  on  the  31st  of 
jNIay,  the  journey  having  occupied  thii-ty-five  days. 
They  had  an  interview  with  the  King  on  the  7th  of 
June,  who  gave  them  a  favourable  reception. 

The  Missionaries  remained  together  in  the  kingdom 
of  Shoa  until  November  6,  1839 ;  when  Mr.  Isenberg 
departed,  to  return  for  a  season  to  this  country.  During 
these  five  months  they  were  diligently  occupied  in  con- 
versational preaching  and  discussion,  and  in  obtaining 
a  great  variety  of  information.  Mr.  Isenberg  had  made 
considerable  progress  in  translations  into  the  Amharic 
Language,  both  while  in  Tigre,  and  after  his  arrival  in 
Shoa.  A  leading  object  of  his  \isit  to  England  was  to 
print  the  works  which  he  had  prepared,  for  the  future 
use  of  the  Mission  wherever  the  Amharic  Language  is 
vernacular.  He  arrived  in  London  on  the  30th  of  April, 
1840.  Here  he  completed  works  already  commenced, 
and  prepared  several  others.  He  eventually  carried 
through  the  Press  : — 

An  Amharic  Spelling  Book.  8vo. 

Grammar.  Royal  Bvo. 

Dictionary.  4to. 

Catechism.  Bvo. 

Chui'ch  History.  8vo. 


Amharic  General  History.  8vo. 

Mr.  Isenberg  had  prepared  a  Vocabulary  of  the 
Daiikali  Language,  which  was  likewise  printed. 

Tlie  object  of  the  Mission  was  not  only  the  Chris- 
tian population  of  Shoa,  but  the  Galla  Tribes  exten- 
sively spread  over  the  south-eastern  parts  of  Africa. 
To  the  Galla  language  therefore,  hitherto  unwritten, 
Mr.  Krapf  s  attention  was  much  given.  During  Mr. 
Isenberg's  stay  in  London  the  following  Galla  works, 
prepared  by  Mr.  Krapf,  were  printed  : — 

Vocabulary.  12mo. 

Elements  of  the  Galla  Language.  12mo. 

St.  Matthew's  Gospel.  12mo. 

St.  John's  Gospel.  12mo. 

The  Committee  have  since  received  from  INIr.  Krapf 
a  translation  into  Galla  of  the  Book  of  Genesis,  and  of 
the  Epistle  to  the  Romans. 

While  Mr.  Isenberg  was  absent  in  England,  Mr. 
Krapf,  though  alone,  and  painfully  feeling  the  diffi- 
culties and  disadvantages  of  his  solitariness,  occupied 
himself  diligently  and  zealously  in  his  arduous  duties. 
Amidst  much  to  try  and  discourage  him,  he  was  gra- 
ciously sustained  in  his  work,  and  not  left  without 
tokens  of  the  Divine  blessing  upon  it.  The  nature  of 
that  work,  and  the  difficulties  and  trials  incident  to  the 
prosecution  of  it,  are  fully  detailed  in  the  Joui-nals  of 
the  Missionaries  contained  in  this  Volume. 

Dm-ing  the  period  that  Messrs.  Isenberg  and  Krapf 
were  together  in  the  Mission,  their  communications  were 


sometimes  addressed  to  the  Committee  jointly,  and 
sometimes  independently.  In  placing  those  commu- 
nications before  the  reader,  the  chronological  order 
has  been  followed.  Hence  sometimes  one  speaks,  and 
sometimes  the  other.  The  tenour  of  the  remarks 
will,  however,  generally  indicate  the  individual  who 
makes  them.  From  the  period  when  Mr.  Isenberg 
quitted  Shoa,  in  the  beginning  of  November  1839,*  it 
is  of  course  Mr.  Krapf  alone  that  speaks. 

Mr.  Krapf's  private  affairs  having  called  himto  Egypt, 
he  left  Ankobar  on  the  10th  of  March,  1842.  He  de- 
termined to  go  by  Goudar  and  Massowah.  One  object 
was  personal  communication  with  the  new  Abuna,  the 
ecclesiastical  head  of  the  Abyssinian  Church.  In  this  ob- 
ject he  was  disappointed.  Just  before  he  reached  Daunt, 
in  the  province  of  Belissen,  his  progress  was  stopped  in 
consequence  of  the  country  having  been  thrown  into  a 
state  of  confusion  by  hostilities  between  two  of  the  Chiefs 
of  that  part  of  Abyssinia.  Hence  he  was  obliged  to 
retrace  his  steps  to  Gatira,  the  capital  of  a  Chief  named 
Adara  Bille.  This  man  on  Mr.  Krapf's  advance  had 
treated  him  with  kindness,  and  gained  his  confidence. 
He  now,  however,  determined  to  plunder  him.  By  a 
series  of  artful  proceedings  he  effected  his  purpose, 
and  stripped  Mr.  Krapf  of  the  whole  of  his  property. 
His  life  itself  was  seriously  endangered.  A  gracious 
Providence  rescued  him  from  the  perils  of  his  situa- 
tion.    Having  obtained  leave  to  depart  from  Gatu'a,  he 

*p.  IGO. 


determined  to  attempt  reaching  Massowah  by  a  route 
directed  to  the  north-east.  Throughout  this  journey 
he  encountered  great  hardships^  privations,  and  dan- 
gers; but  under  the  defence  of  the  Most  High,  in 
whom  he  trusted,  he  was  brought  to  Massowah  in 
safetj^,  on  the  1st  of  May,  1842.  This  journey  led 
Mr.  Krapf  through  parts  of  Abyssinia  not  previously 
traversed  by  Europeans.  This  portion  of  his  Journal 
is  therefore  of  much  interest  for  the  geographical  infor- 
mation which  it  contains,  as  well  as  for  the  insight 
which  it  gives  into  the  state  of  the  people. 

In  Egypt  Mr.  Krapf  met  his  fellow  labourer  Mr. 
Isenberg  returning  to  Abyssinia.  Mr.  Blumhardt, 
their  former  associate  in  Tigre,  had  been  transferred  by 
the  Committee  to  the  North  India  Mission.  He  had 
been  replaced  in  the  Abyssinian  Mission  by  the  Rev. 
John  Miihleisen,  who  reached  Cairo  in  company  with 
]\Ir.  Isenberg.  The  three  Missionaries  and  Mrs. 
Krapf,  to  whom  Mr.  Krapf  had  been  united  in  Egypt, 
left  Cairo  on  the  17th  Oct.  They  reached  Aden  on 
the  2nd  of  Nov.  On  the  18th  of  Dec.  they  sailed 
for  Tadjun'a,  and  reached  that  place  on  the  20th.  Here 
they  found  a  series  of  obstacles  opposed  to  their  re- 
entrance  into  Abyssinia.  Having  in  vain  employed 
every  means  in  their  power  to  surmount  those  obstacles, 
they  were  compelled  to  relinquish  the  attempt  and 
return  to  Aden.  Of  the  precise  nature  of  the  causes 
which  operated  to  close  the  door  against  the  return  of 
the  Missionaries  to  Shoa  we  are  not  at  present  fully  in- 

xii  PREFACE. 

formed.  From  what  has  transpired,  however,  it  is  pro- 
bable that  they  are  of  the  same  description  as  those 
which  led  to  the  expulsion  of  the  Missionaries  from 
Tigre — the  jealousy  of  the  Priesthood  and  politico- 
popish  intrigue. 

Reference  will  be  seen  in  the  Journals  to  a  French 
traveller,  M.  Rochet.  He  arrived  in  Shoa  in  Oct.  1839. 
After  some  stay  there  he  returned  to  France,  and  in 
1841  published  at  Paris  a  volume  entitled,  "  Voyage 
dans  la  cote  orientale  de  la  ]\Ier  Rouge,  dans  la  pays 
d'Adel,  et  la  Royaume  de  Choa.'^  (Shoa.)  In  the 
course  of  his  work  he  gives  an  account  of  the  eccle- 
siastical affairs  of  Abyssinia.  He  closes  this  account 
Avith  the  following  remarks,  which  instructively  warn 
Protestants — if  warning  were  needed — of  the  policy 
and  plans  of  Rome. 

"  The  critical  state  of  Christianity  in  the  kingdom  of 
Shoa  should  call  for  the  efforts  of  a  Catholic  Mission  to 
that  country.  I  should  desire  that  Missionaries  of  this 
communion  might  succeed  in  rallying  the  Amharras 
round  it;  but  I  think  there  is  not  a  more  delicate  task — 
that  there  is  not  a  work  which  demands  more  prudence: 
an  ardent  inconsiderate  zeal  would  endanger  all.  Our 
Missionaries  should  not  forget  that  the  heat  of  the 
Portuguese  Jesuits  lost  all  the  advantages  which  Catho- 
licism had  previously  obtained,  and  ended  by  causing 
them  to  be  driven  out  of  Abyssinia  in  the  sixteenth 
century.  The  Abyssinians  still  remember  the  violent 
dissensions  which  the  vehemence  of  the  Jesuits  had 


created  among  them.     The  last  traces  of  this  remem- 
brance— grievous  precedent  for   Catholicism — must  be 
effaced  by  means  of  forbearance  and  tolerance.     Our 
Missionaries  ought  even  to  be  cautious  of  avowing  then* 
intention.     It  will,  I  doubt  not,  be  for  the  interest  of 
their  cause — and   an  able  and  auspicious  pohcy— only 
to  present  themselves  at  first  as  chemists  or  mechanics, 
after  the  example  of  the  Jesuits   who  conducted,  in 
the  seventeenth  century,  the  glorious  China  Missions. 
I  beheve  it  unnecessary  to  add,  that  a  cold,  reserved  course 
should  only  be  observed  until  their  credit  with  the  king 
and  their  influence  over  the  country  should  be  solidly 
established  by  their  successful  labours.     Their  efforts 
should  at  first  be  directed  toward  the  king,  for  on  his 
conversion  alone  would  depend  that  of  the  Amharras. 
Attempts  on  the  Gallas  might  be  tried,  by  representing 
to  the  prince  of  what  political  advantage  it  would  be 
for  him  to  unite  all  the  members  of  his  states  in  the 
same  unity  of  faith.     It  would  be  necessary  to  avoid 
showing  any  jealousy  or  animosity  toward  the  jNIethodist 
Mission,  whose  vnse  conduct  ought  on  the  contrary  to 
be  followed  as  a  model.     In  every  circumstance  it  would 
be  necessary  always  to  keep  in  view  that  the  slightest 
imprudence,  the  least  rashness,  would  suffice  to  destroy 
for  ever  in  Abyssinia  the  entrance  of  Catholicism,  per- 
haps of  Christianity  and  of  Civilization.'^* 

It  is  scarcely  necessary  to  say  that  the  "  Methodist 
Mission"  to  which  M.  Rochet  refers,  is  that  of  ]Messrs. 

*  Rochet,  pp.  WJ,  190. 
a   5 


Isenberg  and  Kvapf.  The  Readers  of  their  Journals 
will,  however,  not  fail  to  remark  that  they  pursued  a 
course  widely  different  from  that  advocated  by  M.  Ro- 
chet for  Rome.  They  uniformly  avowed  their  cha- 
racter as  Protestant  Missionaries;  whose  only  object 
was,  the  Lord  blessing  their  labours,  to  diffuse  Scrip- 
tural light  in  a  region  of  spiritual  darkness. 

Whether  a  re-entrance  into  Abyssinia  may  be  prac- 
ticable to  the  Missionaries  at  a  future  period,  it  would 
be  vain  to  speculate.  That  a  measure  of  scriptural 
light  has  been  diffused  by  their  instrumentality  cannot 
be  doubted.  Many  copies  of  the  New  Testament  in 
Amharic,  supplied  by  the  liberality  of  the  British  and 
Foreign  Bible  Society,  have  been  widely  dispersed. 
They  were  received  with  avidity  wherever  the  Mission- 
aries had  an  opportunity  of  circulating  them,  and  in 
Mr.  Krapf's  journeyings  copies  were  found  in  remote 
places,  far  distant  from  any  spot  previously  visited  by  a 
Missionary.  We  may  therefore  warrantably  hope  that 
a  portion  at  least  of  the  good  seed  will  take  root,  and 
bring  forth  fruit  to  perfection. 

As  it  appears  that  rivers  of  considerable  magnitude 
fall  into  the  Indian  Ocean  from  those  parts  of  Eastern 
Africa  inhabited  by  the  Heathen  Galla  Tribes,  Mr.  Krapf 
had  it  in  contemplation  to  make  an  attempt  to  re-esta- 
blish the  ]\lission  in  that  direction,  so  soon  as  circum- 
stances would  permit. 

During  the  period  of  Mr.  Krapf  s  residence  at  An- 
kobar,  a  communication  was  opened  between  the  King 


of  Shoa  and  the  British  Authorities  in  India.  An 
Embassy,  under  the  direction  of  Captain  Harris,  was 
sent  to  Shoa  by  the  Governor-General  of  India.  Cap- 
tain Harris  reached  his  destination  in  July  1841.  A 
Treaty  was  concluded  between  Captain  Harris  and  the 
King  of  Shoa  on  Nov.  13,  1841,  establishing  a  com- 
mercial intercoui'se  between  the  two  countries,  and  gua- 
ranteeing the  safety  of  British  subjects  in  Shoa,  and 
the  security  of  their  property.  At  the  solicitation  of 
Captain  Harris,  Mr.  Krapf  acted  as  his  Interpreter  in 
negotiating  the  Treaty;  and  in  a  despatch  to  the  Bombay 
Government,  Captain  Harris  thus  recorded  his  sense  of 
the  value  of  Mr.  Krapf  s  semces  : — 

"  Mr.  Krapf  has  submitted  with  the  utmost  good- 
will to  continual  interruption  in  his  more  immediate 
quiet  avocations,  and  has  never  required  even  the  inti- 
mation of  a  wish  to  render  himself  of  the  greatest 
utility  to  the  Embassy ;  not  only  in  the  more  delicate 
forms  of  interpretation,  which  he  so  well  understands, 
but  also  in  those  minor  points  of  annoyance  which  are 
certain  in  the  first  instance  to  arise  in  a  strange  country. 
From  the  first  day  of  our  arrival  he  has,  in  utter  con- 
tempt of  all  weather,  been  engaged  whenever  the  inte- 
rests of  the  service  required  his  presence ;  and  without 
his  most  able  assistance,  and  perfect  knowledge  of  Abys- 
sinian life,  our  situation  would  have  become  perplexing, 
and  our  prospect  of  success  removed  to  a  far  distant 


Throughout  Captain  Harris's  stay  in  the  country,  he 
showed  Mr,  Krapf  much  kindness,  and  rendered  to 
him  and  the  Mission  many  services.  The  Embassy 
having  been  recalled,  Captain  Harris  has  just  arrived 
in  England.  We  understand  he  is  about  immediately 
to  lay  before  the  public  the  information  collected  oy 
him  during  eighteen  months  residence  in  Shoa.  The 
character  which  Captain  Harris  has  already  established 
as  a  Traveller,  in  South  Africa,  warrants  the  anticipa- 
tion that  his  work  on  Abyssinia  will  prove  both 
interesting  and  important. 

Reference  has  already  been  made  to  the  geographi- 
cal information  comprised  in  the  Journals  now  laid 
before  the  public.  Of  a  portion  of  this  information 
Mr.  M'Queen  availed  himself,  with  the  permission 
of  the  Committee,  in  his  '*  Geographical  Survey  of 
Africa,"  published  in  1840.  On  being  shewn  the  sub- 
sequent Journals  of  the  Missionaries,  he  was  so  much 
struck  with  the  extent  and  value  of  the  geographical 
information  contained  in  them,  that  he  very  kindly 
offered  to  draw  a  Map  of  Abyssinia,  to  accompany  the 
publication  of  the  Journals,  exhibiting  the  information 
thus  acquired.  This  offer  the  Committee  gratefully 
accepted,  and  the  Map,  engraved  by  Arrowsmith,  is 
pretixed  to  the  Journals. 

"While  Mr.  M'Queen  was  thus  employed,  tidings 
reached  this  country  of  the  result  of  certain  Expeditions 
sent  up   the   A\liite    Nile   by    that    remarkable  man, 


Mahomed  Ali,  Pacha  of  Egypt.  The  information  thus 
obtained  having  an  important  bearing  on  south-western 
Abyssinia,  as  well  as  on  the  country  south  of  Nubia, 
almost  to  the  Line,  INIr.  INPQueen  had  the  goodness 
to  draw  another  ]\Iap,  exhibiting  that  information, 
which  he  presented  to  the  Committee.  This  Map  in- 
cludes the  countries  from  5"  South  to  18°  North  Lati- 
tude, and  from  5°  to  44°  East  Longitude. 

In  constructing  these  IMaps  Mr.  M'Queen  has  availed 
himself,  with  great  labour,  of  the  information  bearing 
on  the  geography  of  the  countries  to  which  they  refer, 
which  was  accessible  to  him  in  the  writings  of  authors 
ancient  and  modern.  Among  these,  Bruce  merits  par- 
ticular notice,  the  statements  contained  in  his  Travels 
relative  to  the  geography  of  Abyssinia,  and  the  sur- 
rounding countries,  having,  in  its  general  character, 
been  very  remarkably  corroborated  by  later  travellers. 

To  the  serA-ices  just  referred  to,  Mr.  jM^Queen  has 
added  another — a  Geographical  Memoir,  to  illus- 
trate the  Maps.  On  this-  Memoir  IMr.  McQueen  has 
bestowed  much  research,  and  it  forms  a  valuable  addi- 
tion to  the  services  already  rendered  to  Africa,  by 
this  able  geographer.  The  Map  of  Africa  is  prefixed 
to  the  Geographical  Memoir. 

To  Captain  Haines,  the  Commandant  at  Aden,  the 
Committee  owe  the  expression  of  their  cordial  thanks 
for  his  uniform  kindness  to  the  Society's  Missionaries, 
and  for  the  valuable  assistance  which  he  has  at  all  times 


shown  himself  ready,   promptly  and  cordially,  to  render 
them  in  the  prosecution  of  their  labours. 


August  21,  1843. 





ING   ISLAMISM.             ----... 












ARRIVE    AT    MULLU,  ------       IG 


TAKE      LEAVE      OF      MAHOMED      ALI — DEPARTURE      FROM 





OF    IT VISIT    TO    A    LAKE  WEST    OF    THE    HAWASH — 



AT     ISLAM    AMBA VISIT    TO    THE     KING,    AND    KIND 



IN'FLUEXTIAL        GOVERNOR        OF       THE        ABEDTSHOO 




ANKOBAR.  - 43 






OF    ST.     GEORGE — PARTICULARS     OF     THE      KINO     OF 










CAPITAL    OF    SHOA    -------82 





TICES   OF    VARIOUS    TRIBES         -----    1  ] -i 












CEREMONY        --------    160 






TAGES   GAINED    BY    THE    EXPEDITION         -  -  .    187 





xxiv  CONTENTS. 


CAFFA,    AND    SENTSHERO.  .  _  -  -  - 















MOTHER    OF    THE    KING   OF    SHOA — ORIGIN     OF     THE 



PROVINCE      OF      MANS NOTICES       OF       ITS       FORMER 






SHOA — VISIT    THE    GOVERNOR.  -  -  .  .   £61 








ALIGAS,      GOVERNOR      OF      WADELA,      ATTACKS       THE 






KRAPF.  -----__-   319 








LADERE — LEAVE     BORA,      AND     CROSS     THE     RIVER 


PARTURE      FROM         LEEBSO  —  CROSS  THE        RIVER 












DEL,    AND    REACH  THE    VILLAGE    OF    DELDEI.    -  -   403 

CONTENTS.  xxvii 








WITH     THE-   GOVERNOR     OF     A     VILLAGE  —  PASS    THE 


OF     MAWOINI — KINDLY     RECEIVED      BY     A     MONK — 

ARRIVE     AT     ANTALO  — CHURCH      OF      ST.     GEORGE 








VISIT    THE    ALACA    OF    THE    CHURCH    OF    ST.    GEORGE 







t   ••   •  •     "      '* 




Within  the  last  few  years,  the  geographical  features  of 
Africa  have  begun  to  assume  something  like  a  natural  and 
a  rational  shape.  Every  day  brings  us  some  important 
geographical  information  regarding  interesting  portions  of 
that  vast  Continent.  Some  of  this  is  entirely  new,  and 
other  portions  of  it  confirmatory  of  the  accounts  col- 
lected and  transmitted  to  us  by  the  ancients,  but 
which  modern  wisdom  would  neither  allow  to  be  possible 
nor  correct.  The  attention  of  the  world  is  now,  how- 
ever, so  closely  directed  to  that  fine,  but  hitherto  much 
neglected  quarter  of  the  Globe,  that  its  interior  and  least 
known  parts,  have  already  been  widely  explored,  and  will,  it 
is  confidently  predicted,  in  a  few  years  more,  be  explored 
to   their  deepest  recesses,  and  correctly  delineated. 



Among  those  to  whooi  African  Geography  and  the 
friends  of  Africa  are  at  this  moment  deeply  indebted, 
— Messrs.  Isenberg  and  Krapf,  the  worthy  Missionaries 
sent  oat  some  years  ago  by  the  Church  Missionary  Society, 
to  preach  the  Gospel  in  the  Eastern  and  interior  parts  of 
Africa, — claim  the  first  place.  The  travels  and  the  labours 
of  these  excellent  men,  have  been  the  first  to  bring  before 
the  British  Public  correct  information  regarding  that  in- 
teresting, and  once  celebrated  portion  of  Africa,  lying  to 
the  south  of  the  Straits  of  Babelmandeb,  to  the  south- 
east and  south  of  Abyssinia,  and  the  upper  and  early 
course  of  the  Bahr-el-azreek,  or  the  Blue  Nile.  The 
Journals  of  these  men  form  the  principal  object  and  con- 
tents of  the  present  publication,  and  are  so  interest- 
ing, from  laying  before  us,  as  they  do,  the  highlands 
which  give  birth  to,  and  which  separate  the  waters  of 
some  of  the  largest  and  most  important  Rivers  in  Africa, 
that  the  v,rriter  of  this  considered  it  but  justice  to  these 
individuals,  and  of  importance  to  a  right  understanding 
of  the  subject,  to  arrange  and  delineate  in  a  map  their 
travels  and  all  the  other  important  information  which 
he  has  lately  collected  and  obtained  regarding  the  Eastern 
and  Central  portions  of  Africa,  more  immediately  con- 
nected with  the  journeys  and  information  given  by  the 
Missionaries  alluded  to. 

With  great  labour,  and  with  much  care,  this  has  accor- 
dingly been  done.  The  present  memoir  narrates,  in  a  form 
as  condensed  as  possible,  the  general  heads  of  the  subject, 
together  with  the  authorities  from  which  the  information 
has  been  drawn,  and  the  reader  will  be  able  to  trace  the 
descriptions  and  journeys  on  the  accompanying  maps. 
From  these  he  will  perceive  the  importance  of  the  infor- 


mation  which  has  been  obtained  and  collected,  and  the 
remarkable  errors  which  have  hitherto  prevailed  in  the 
Geography  of  this  portion  of  Africa,  arising  in  many  in- 
stances, not  so  much  from  the  want  of  information,  as  from 
the  carelessness  with  which  that  has  been  examined,  and  as 
if  it  were  from  a  determination  to  resist  the  truth. 

The  information  which  our  Countryman  Bruce  collected 
and  received,  regarding  the  portion  of  Africa  more  espe- 
cially under  consideration,  was  not  only  extensive,  but  ac- 
curate and  important.  If  he  had  been  fortunate  enough 
to  have  had  an  Arrowsmith  or  a  Wyld  at  his  elbow,  to  de- 
lineate on  a  map  the  information  which  he  had  collected, 
the  great  features  of  all  the  most  important  portions  of  the 
Geography  of  Afi-ica  to  the  North  of  the  Equator,  would 
have  been  placed  before  the  eyes  of  Europe  sixty  years  ago. 
His  account  of  Abyssinia,  and  several  places  adjacent  to 
it,  is  the  best  that  has  yet  come  in  the  writer's  way.  As 
we  proceed,  this  fact  will  be  clearly  established.  The 
general  correctness  of  the  features  of  this  portion  of  Africa 
as  drawn  by  Ptolemv,  will  also  be  shewn  and  ascertained. 
The  travellers  and  authorities  from  which  the  writer  has 
drawn  information  will  be  carefully  and  faithfully  pointed 
out.  But  he  would  be  acting  unjustly  if  he  did  not  take  this 
opportunity  of  returning  his  cordial  thanks  to  M.  Jo- 
mard,  of  Paris,  well  known  for  his  great  attention  to 
every  part  of  African  Geography,  for  the  great  kindness 
shewn  by  that  gentleman  in  transmitting  him,  by  the 
earliest  possible  opportunity,  the  official  abstract  of  the 
voyage  of  discovery  directed  by  the  present  Viceroy  of 
Egypt,  about  three  years  ago,  to  explore  the  Bahr-el-abiad, 
or  White  River.  This  has  been  done  in  a  remarkable 
manner,  and  is  one  of  the  most  interesting  and  im- 


portant  voyages  of  discovery  Avhich  has  been  made  in 
modern  times. 

One  of  the  greatest  difficulties  encountered  in  unravelHng 
African  Geography  is  the  diversity  of  names  that  are  given 
to  the  same  Country,  Town,  Mountain,  or  River,  according 
as  these  may  have  been  obtained  or  collected  by  different 
travellers  from  different  natives  ;  and  these  again  differing 
according  as  they  are  obtained  from  Negro  or  Arab  Tribes. 
The  different  mode  of  writing  and  pronouncing  the  same 
name  even  among  Europeans  is  often  extremely  puzzling. 
This  diversity  of  names  for  the  same  thing  is  so  great  and  so 
frequent,  that  it  requires  no  ordinary  patience  and  stretch  of 
memory  to  detect  them  and  to  hold  the  particular  place 
steadily  in  view. 

Another  great  difficulty  proceeds  from  the  narrator's 
reversing  the  bearings  of  one  place  from  another  :  putting 
West  for  East,  and  North  for  South,  and  so  on.  Thus 
he  will  say,  Wara  is  north-east  from  Dar  Ruma ;  where- 
as it  is  Dar  Ruma  that  is  north-east  from  Wara.  The 
narrator,  who  had  been  at  both,  placing  himself  while  giv- 
ing information  at  Dar  Ruma,  instead  of  remembering  that 
he  was  looking  from  Wara  to  Dar  Ruma.  This  kind  of 
mistake  is  very  frequent  among  Negro  and  Arab  travel- 
lers and  narrators.  Thus,  where  there  is  no  check  from 
an  opposite  direction  or  a  point  more  beyond,  it  is  some- 
times impossible  to  find  out  the  truth. 

In  like  manner  great  errors  are  frequently  committed 
with  regard  to  the  courses  of  rivers,  the  Arabs  especially 
putting  the  geographical  bearing  of  the  bed  of  the  river  for 
the  course  of  the  current  of  the  stream.  Thus  they  say  of 
the  Nile  it  goes  from  Egypt  to  Abyssinia  ;  whereas  the  river 
comes,  as  Europeans  express  it,  from  Abyssinia  to  Egypt. 


Such  mistakes  with  regard  to  hearings,  as  those  ahove 
adverted  to,  are  very  frequently  committed  in  European 
Authors.  Thus  in  Bruce's  works,  his  editor  has  made  the 
bearings  of  places  bounding  each  other  the  reverse  of  what 
they  really  are.  For  instance,  Tigre  is  stated  to  be  bound- 
ed on  the  north-east  by  Begemder  ;  whereas  it  is  Begemder 
that  is  bounded  on  the  north-east  by  Tigre.  A  similar  error 
has  been  committed  with  most  of  the  Abyssinian  provinces, 
and  these  errors  have  been  copied  into  almost  every  work 
that  I  have  seen  :  Murray's  Africa,  the  Encyclopcedia  Bri- 
tannica,  &c.  which  have  copied  from  Bruce.  These  errors 
can,  however,  be  detected  with  a  little  care;  but  not  so  those 
where  south-east  is  put  for  south-west,  as  is  sometimes  the 
case.  These  require  invincible  patience  and  research  to 
miravel.  In  Mr.  Krapf's  first  journey,  he  states,  that  from 
Dobra  Berhan  to  Tegulet  he  went  east ;  whereas  it  should 
have  been  west  ;  and  instead  of  Lake  Zawash  emptying 
itself  to  the  south  as  he  then  indicated,  we  now  find  that 
it  empties  itself  into  the  Hawash,  and  in  an  opposite  direc- 
tion. Pages  might  be  filled  in  pointing  out  similar  errors 
committed  by  travellers. 

In  estimating  the  distance  and  positions  of  places  from 
days'  journey,  the  greatest  care  is  necessary  to  ascertain 
whether  such  journeys  are  performed  by  single  travellers, 
travelling  expeditiously  for  only  two  or  three  days,  and  for 
pleasure  ;  or  by  a  special  messenger  ;  or  by  the  steady  reg- 
ular journey  of  the  mercantile  Caravan.  The  distance  gone 
over  by  each,  if  exceeding  two  or  three  days,  scarcely  ever 
varies,  especially  of  the  latter  ;  and  are  only  lessened  or  ex- 
tended according  to  the  nature  of  the  country,  moun- 
tainous, rocky,  woody,  clear  or  level,  that  they  may  have 
to  traverse.     In  a  journey  of  two  or  three  days  there  may 


be  some  little  discrepancy  as  to  the  daily  distance  made 
good,  especially  if  there  is  no  time  given  to  check  it ;  but 
when  the  journey  comes  to  extend  to  several  days,  or  for 
a  considerable  period  of  time,  it  is  astonishing  with  what 
accuracy  the  positions  of  places  can  be  ascertained  and 
determined  by  this  mode  of  measurement.  I  have  found 
it  not  to  vary  more  than  15  miles  in  1000,  and  this  when 
checked  by  journeys  of  an  equal  length  to  a  given  place, 
made  from  the  opposite  or  from  a  different  direction. 
Great  care  has  been  taken  in  regard  to  this  matter  in  con- 
structing the  accompanying  maps ;  and  the  results,  after 
being  again  and  again  checked,  have  come  out  very  con- 
vincing and  very  satisfactory. 

With  these  preliminary  remarks  we  proceed  to  consider 
the  Journals  of  the  travellers  alluded  to,  and  the  positions 
and  general  features  of  the  countries  and  districts  through 
which  they  went. 

The  journey  of  Mr.  Krapf  and  Mr.  Isenberg  to  Ankobar 
comes  first  in  order.  They  landed  at  Zeilah  on  the  1st.  of 
April  1839.  This  is  a  decayed  town,  containing  only  eight 
stone  houses  and  about  one  hundred  straw  huts,  together 
occupied  by  about  800  inhabitants,  mean  and  poor.  Their 
food  consists  of  maize,  dates,  milk,  and  rice,  and  occasion- 
ally flesh.  The  harbour  is  very  bad,  having  many  sand 
banks,  and  several  small  islands  near  it  toward  the  north. 
The  town  is  surrounded  with  walls,  and  has,  on  the  land 
side,  seven  pieces  of  ordnance,  pointed  to  the  country  of 
the  Somaulis,  with  which  people  dwelling  to  the  south-east 
and  south,  the  town  has  a  considerable  intercourse  ;  but 
feuds  and  jealousies  very  frequently  prevail  between  them. 
Zeilah  has  a  good  deal  of  intercourse  with  the  adjoining  and 
interior  countries,  especially  with  Hurrur,  from  which  place 


a  considerable  quantity  of  fine  coffee  is  brought  yearly  and 
shipped  to  Mocha,  from  which  latter  place  it  subsequently 
finds  its  way  to  the  markets  of  Europe  and  America. 
Zeilah  was  formerly  a  place  of  considerable  importance 
and  the  emporium  for  the  Indian  trade  with  those  parts  of 
Africa  adjoining,  especially  when  first  known  to,  and  occu- 
pied bv  the  Turks,  at  the  commencement  of  the  fifteenth 
century.  In  the  days  of  Batouta,  say  1332,  it  was, 
subsequently  to  the  decay  of  Aussa,  the  chief  town  of 
the  kingdom  of  Adel,  and  his  description  of  its  site 
was  very  accurate,  and  exactly  as  Mr.  Stewart,  sent  by 
Mr.  Salt  to  enter  Africa  from  this  point,  found  it  to  be,  and 
from  whose  survey  the  accompanying  map  regarding  it 
has  been  drawn  up.*  The  Longitude  and  Latitude, 
especially  the  former,  differs  considerably  in  Stew- 
art's Survey,  he  placing  it  in  Ho  18'  North  and  43°  3' 
East.  I  have  adhered  to  the  position  given  to  it  by 
Captain  Harris,  considering  that  as  having  been  taken 
by  a  late  survey  made  by  the  East  India  Company. 
When  Batouta  visited  the  place,  say  in  1333,  it  was  in- 
habited by  the  Rafiza  sect,  and  belonged  to  the  Berbers, 
a  people  from  the  North  of  Africa  and  of  the  Shafia  sect, 
and  their  country  or  the  country  of  Zielah  was  then 
stated  to  reach  in  extent  two  months'  journey  by  land  to 
Makdashu.  Zeilah  is  fourteen  Caravan  stages  north-east 
from  Hurrur,  and  about  five  orsix  days'  journey  eastof  Aussa. 
From  Zeilah  the  travellers  embarked  for  Tajoura,  a 
small  town,  the  capital  of  a  state  of  that  name,  situated 
to  the  south-west  of  Ras  Bir,  at  the  entrance  of  a  deep 
bay  extending  to  the  south-west.  The  existence  of  this 
bay,  or  rather  the  bays  which  run  from  Tajoura  in  the 
*  Salt,  p:  475. 


direction  mentioned,  and  the  true  position  of  this  small 
hut  important  town,  were  all  unknown  till  they  were  dis- 
closed by  the  Missionaries  mentioned.  The  town  is  still 
smaller  and  poorer  than  Zielah,  containing  only  about 
300  inhabitants ;  but  it  is  the  nearest  point  from  which  to 
penetrate  into  the  most  interesting  portions  of  Abyssinia, 
and  has  good  anchorage  near  it,  a  thing  scarcely  found 
on  any  portion  of  the  East  coast  of  Africa,  especially 
without  the  Straits  of  Babelmandeb  until  the  Equinoctial 
line  is  passed.  The  inhabitants  of  Berbera  send  to  Ta- 
joura  for  water,  which  is  found  of  excellent  quality  in 
wells  and  reservoirs  in  its  vicinity.  Tajoura,  according 
to  Captain  Harris,  stands  in  11°  46'  35"  North  Latitude, 
and  in  43°  00'  20"  East  Longitude,  and  is  built  upon 
a  plain  at  the  foot  of  the  mountains,  the  soil  being  compo- 
sed of  particles  washed  down  from  the  hills  during  the 
rains.  Like  all  that  portion  of  Africa,  it  is  subject  to 
great  heat  and  drought.  To  the  north  and  north-west 
the  interior  is  very  mountainous,  the  hills  and  ridges 
rising  to  a  very  considerable  elevation.  The  most  impor- 
tant is  Mount  Debenit,  about  35  miles  north-west  of 
Tajoura.  This  mountain  is  very  elevated,  and  accor- 
ding to  M.  Rochet,  who  visited  it,  is  volcanic  and  com- 
posed of  primitive  rock.  There  is  an  extinct  crater  on 
its  summit.  Foxes  and  Gazelles  are  numerous,  both  great 
and  small ;  and  there  is  also  found  a  tree  from  which  is 
extracted  a  very  deadly  poison,  which  the  inhabitants  use 
on  their  arrows.  The  road  from  Tajoura  to  Mount  De- 
benit is  exceedingly  rugged  and  steep,  and  covered  with 
ancient  volcanoes,  quartz,  basalt,  &c. 

From    Tajoura,  Messrs.  Krapf  and  Isenberg  proceeded 
in  about  a  south-W'Cst  by  west  direction  to  Ankobar,  the 


present  capital  of  Shoa,  a  state  now  independent  of  the 
empire  of  Abyssinia.  The  journey  was  undertaken  in  the 
height  of  the  dry  season,  and  the  route  is  distinctly  marked 
on  the  map.  An  Embassy  from  the  East  India  Company 
to  the  King  of  Shoa,  under  Captain  Harris,  and  sent  in  con- 
sequence of  the  information  which  the  Missionaries  had 
given,  travelled  over  nearly  the  same  ground  in  1841, 
and  also  a  French  traveller  M.  Rochet,  a  few  months 
after  Messrs.  Isenberg  and  Krapf.  The  journeys  of  Har- 
ris and  Rochet  were  accomplished  in  the  wet  season,  and 
consequently  the  country  wore  a  different  aspect.  Nu- 
merous and  considerable  rivers,  which  were  dry  when  the 
Missionaries  passed,  traversed  the  country,  and  flowed  to 
the  Hawash  or  the  Lakes.  Among  these  is  one  named 
by  M.  Rochet  the  Killalou,  which  runs  from  south  to 
north-east  a  distance  of  forty  miles,  and  falls  into  the 
Natron  Lake.  In  the  rainy  season  it  is  sixty  feet  broad, 
and  from  five  to  six  feet  deep.  At  Goubade  there  is  ano- 
ther, which  runs  from  east-north-east  to  north-north-west. 
The  current  is  rapid,  and  the  breadth  100  metres  (250 
feet)  and  depth  forty  centimetres.  There  are  numerous 
hot  springs  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Omargalouf,  about 
three  leagues  east  of  Lake  Aussa,  and  also  in  the  neigh- 
bourhood of  Killalou.  Lake  Aussa  is  of  considerable  extent, 
it  overflows  during  the  rainy  season,  and  when  it  recedes 
leaves  a  fine  deposit,  like  that  which  is  left  by  the  Egyptian 
Nile.  During  the  overflow,  the  superabundant  waters  run 
ofli^  into  the  Natron  Lake,  about  nine  miles  distant  north- 
east. Mr.  Isenberg  was  told  that  the  waters  of  Aussa 
were  bitter;  but  M.  Rochet  says  they  are  sweet.  Aussa, 
some  centuries  ago,  was  the  capital  of  the  kingdom  of 
Adel,  and  a  place  of  great  importance  ;  but  it  is  now  much 
b  .5 


decayed.  It  lies  due  west  from  Karanta,  and  is  situated 
according  to  Bruce,  on  a  bank  of  the  river  Hawash.* 
It  is  the  capital  of  the  tribe  of  Dankali  called  Mudaites, 
the  most  powerful  at  this  time  in  this  portion  of  Africa. 
Several  Ulemas  and  other  learned  Mahomedans  yet  re- 
side in  the  place.  It  contains  from  1400  to  1600  houses, 
and  from  5000  to  6000  inhabitants.  The  soil  is  very  fer- 
tile, and  supplies  Dourah  for  the  consumption  of  all  the 
adjoining  parts  of  Adel.  It  was  at  this  place,  then  called 
Auxa,  not  at  Zeilah,  where  the  two  Portuguese  Missionaries, 
who  formed  part  of  the  Mission  of  Jerome  Lobo,  and  who 
attempted  to  penetrate  into  Abyssinia,  by  landing  at  Zeilah, 
were  murdered. 

The  Sultan  of  Tajoura,  though  of  small  power,  is  repre- 
sented to  be  a  brave  man,  with  a  very  large  family.  At 
some  distance  from  this  place,  in  the  interior,  Mr.  Isenberg 
was  told,  that  coals,  resembling  those  imported  into  Aden, 
were  found.  AH  the  country  from  Tajoura  to  Ankobar  is 
volcanic,  everywhere  exhibiting  volcanic  ridges,  ancient 
volcanoes,  and  places  covered  with  volcanic  remains.  This 
is  especially  the  case  to  the  westward  and  northward  of 
r^Iulloo.  Several  of  these  plains  are  very  fertile,  and  on 
the  hills  and  ridges  the  air  is  cool  and  pleasant,  the  coun- 
try rising  gradually  from  the  sea.  The  lake  of  Assal,  or 
the  Salt  Lake,  is  of  considerable  extent ;  and  the  salt  taken 
from  it  forms  a  considerable  branch  of  commerce  with  the 
countries  in  the  interior,  to  the  south,  to  the  west,  and  to 
the  north.  It  is  stated  to  be  570  feet  below  the  level  of 
the  sea,  and  is  a  few  miles  distant  from  the  second  Bay  of 
Tajoura,  called  "  Ghoobut  Ghrah,"  itself  clearly  of  volcanic 
origin.  Very  high  ranges  of  hills  bound  the  horizon  to 
*  Vol.  iii.  p.  347. 


the  south  and  south-east  of  the  route  laid  down.  The 
territory  of  the  Chief  of  Tajoura  begins  at  Murza  Dooan, 
and  extends  south  to  the  Salt  Lake.  Its  extent  westward 
is  undefined,  but  it  is  probably  not  great. 

When  Isenberg  and  Krapf  crossed  the  Hawash  on 
the  29th  May,  near  the  end  of  the  dry  season,  they 
found  the  stream  about  sixty  feet  broad,  and  from  two  to 
four  feet  deep,  with  banks  from  fifteen  to  twenty  feet 
high.  When  the  Embassy  of  Captain  Harris  crossed  it 
in  the  wet  season,  and  at  the  same  point,  they  found  the 
stream  from  forty  to  fifty  yards  broad,  and  from  ten  to 
twelve  feet  deep,  the  banks  covered  with  fine  trees,  and  the 
scenery  very  beautiful.  Their  encampment  near  the  river 
was  2223  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea.  M.  Rochet, 
when  he  crossed  the  stream,  found  it  from  fifty  to  fifty-five 
metres  broad,  and  twelve  and  a  half  to  fourteen  deep,  its 
course  from  the  point  where  the  road  crosses  it,  being 
north,  and  afterward  north-east  to  Lake  Aussa,  which 
lake  M.  Rochet  states  is  eighty  metres,  (200  feet)  deep. 
The  banks  of  the  river  are  covered  with  fine  verdure  and 
fine  trees.  There  are  abundance  of  hippopotami  in  the 
stream ;  and  leopards,  zebras,  tigers,  lions,  and  antelopes 
are  numerous  on  its  banks,  which  above  Lake  Aussa  are 
inhabited  by  the  powerful  tribe  Mudaite  or  Hassendera 
already  mentioned.  In  fact,  this  great  tribe  stretch  north- 
ward as  far  as  the  parallel  of  Tajoura. 

Numerous  other  tribes  of  Dankali  spread  over  this  por- 
tion of  Africa  till  they  come  in  contact  with  the  Somauli 
to  the  south  and  south-east  of  Zeilah,  and  the  Galla 
toward  Hurrur,  the  kingdom  of  Shoa  to  the  south-west 
and  west,  and  again  the  Galla  on  the  west,  north-west,  and 
north.     The  names  of  the  principal  of  these  are  mentioned 


by  Mr.  Iseuberg,  and  deserve  scarcely  any  other  notice. 
Among  the  tribes  mentioned  by  Captain  Harris,  we  find 
the  Raheita  inhabiting  the  country  close  to  the  deep 
bays  of  Tajoura.  This  tribe,  we  learn  from  Bruce,* 
formed  an  important  portion  of  the  kingdom  of  Adel, 
and  remained  attached  to  it  when  stripped  of  nearly  all  the 
rest  of  its  dominions.  In  the  days  of  its  splendour,  this 
tribe  extended  itself  to  the  neighbourhood  of  Assab,  where 
we  yet  find  the  river  of  Raheita,  from  which  they  probably 
had  their  name.  From  the  H awash  to  Ankobar  the 
country  is  very  beautiful,  finely  diversified,  and  watered  by 
numerous  streams,  tributaries  to  the  Hawash.  This  district 
forms  part  of  the  kingdom  of  Shoa,  and  is  comprehended 
in,  or  rather  forms  the  district  or  province  of  Lower 
Efat.  Ankobar  is  finely  situated  on  the  eastern  extremity 
of  Mount  Chakka,  and  is  8198  feet  above  the  level  of  the 
sea,  and  in  latitude  nine  degrees  thirty-four  minutes  thir- 
ty-three seconds  north,  and  longitude  thirty-nine  degrees 
thirty-five  minutes  east,  according  to  the  most  recent  ac- 
counts, and  which  position  is  a  few  miles  difl'erent  from 
the  protraction  of  Mr.  Isenberg's  first  journey.  Mr.  Isen- 
berg  and  his  colleague  v;ere  enraptured  with  the  climate  of 
Ankobar.  On  the  4th  of  June  they  found  the  barley 
ready  for  the  harvest,  and  the  thermometer  not  more  than 
40°  during  the  night.  "The  rich  vegetation,  the  situation 
in  a  cool,  vernal,  or  almost  autumnal  atmosiihere,"  says 
Mr.  Isenberg,  "  almost  put  us  in  an  ecstasy." — "  they 
breathed  Alpine  air,  and  drank  Alpine  water."  AngoUalla 
is  200  feet  higher  than  Ankobar,  and  the  mountains  to 
the  south  of  that  place  about  the  sources  of  the  Beresa  and 
the  Tshalsha  rise  to  a  still  greater  height. 
*  Vol.  iii.  p:  347. 


Between  Kudaite  and  the  mountains  of  the  Alia  Galla 
there  is  a  large  plain  or  valley  which,  it  is  said,  extends 
from  the  Hawash  eastward  to  Berber  a.  A  ridge  of  hills 
rising  to  a  considerable  height  stretches  along  the  east 
bank  of  the  Hawash.  In  crossing  the  plain  of  little  Mul- 
loo,  the  grass  was  found  so  high  as  to  rise  above  the  head 
of  a  man  on  horseback.  To  the  south-west  of  this,  at 
some  distance,  M.  Rochet  states  that  there  is  a  volcano  in  a 
state  of  activity.  About  Alleule,  in  the  territory  of  the  tribe 
Dolone,  there  are  fine  palm  trees,  from  which  the  natives 
extract  a  juice  which  they  manufacture  into  a  spirituous 
liquor  which  resembles  champagne.  Betwixt  the  moun- 
tains of  Hassendera  and  the  Mudaites,  on  the  north,  and 
the  Alia  Gallas  on  the  south,  there  is  a  large  plain,  where 
coffee,  citron,  and  sugar-canes  are  cultivated  ;  and  where 
both  zebras  and  elephants  are  found  in  considerable  numbers. 
The  Dannakil  population  of  this  portion  of  Africa  are  es- 
timated at  70,000  souls.  Betwixt  the  Hawash  and  Fari 
are  several  lakes,  one  of  them,  the  most  westerly,  of  con- 
siderable magnitude,  is  called  La  Adu,  or  "  the  far  distant 
water."  Westward  of  Lake  Aussa  and  the  lower  Hawash, 
the  territory  of  a  Chief  named  Imam  Faris,  extends  from 
east  to  west  four  days'  journey,  till  it  touches  upon  the 
Woolla  Galla. 

The  Mudaites  are  the  most  warlike  of  all  the  Dannakil 
tribes.  They  are  not  very  intelligent,  but  have  good  con- 
stitutions, and  their  women  are  good  looking.  The  inhab- 
itants of  Adel  speak  a  language  different  from  the  Arabic, 
the  yEthiopic,  the  Amharic,  or  the  Galla.  Perhaps  the 
ancient  Berber  Language,  stated  to  be  an  original  language, 
or  of  great  antiquity.     They  say  that  their  ancestors  came 


originally  from  Arabia  and  Asia.     Of  the  Dannakils,  Mr. 
Isenberg  says  : — 

"  A  chief  occupation  of  the  Dannakils,  particularly  the 
women,  especially  when  they  travel,  is  the  plaiting  of  mats 
and  baskets,  for  salt  and  corn,  from  the  branches  of  the 
palm-tree.  The  women  are  the  most  industrious.  Thev 
dress  very  slovenly,  and  frequently  wear  nothing  but  a 
piece  of  cloth,  of  a  grey,  blue,  or  variegated  colours,  tied 
round  their  hips,  and  reaching  down  to  the  knees,  sometimes 
bound  round  with  a  fancifully-wrought  leathern  belt.  Not- 
withstanding, they  are  vain,  and  fond  of  wearing  bracelets 
and  foot  ornaments,  ear  and  nose -rings,  coral  strings  on 
their  necks,  &c." 

These  journeys  made  from  Tajourahave  in  the  first  place 
rectified  the  geography  regarding  the  course  of  the  Hawash; 
and  before  proceeding  farther,  it  may  be  advisable  to  rec- 
tify the  geography  of  this  portion  of  Africa,  in  which  such 
great  and  unnecessary  errors  have  been  committed  and  so 
long  continued.  This  the  journeys  under  consideration, 
and  an  attentive  perusal  of  the  information  which  Bruce 
received  about  them,  enables  us  very  clearly  to  do.  The 
constructor  of  Bruce's  map,  and  his  own  narrative  in  seve- 
ral places,  has  made  perfect  havoc  among  them.  An  atten- 
tive perusal  of  his  portions  of  Abyssinian  History,  affords 
the  safest  and  a  tolerably  clear  guide  to  determine  the 
positions  of  these  countries  and  provinces  with  a  sufficient 
degree  of  accuracy.  The  advance  and  retreat  of  the  con- 
tending armies  traces  the  provinces  with  great  clearness  ; 
and  had  the  narratives  regarding  these  been  more  closely  at- 
tended to,  or  attended  to  at  all,  most  of  the  errors  which  have 
crept  into  the  geography  of  this  portion  of  Afi-ica,  would 
never  have  been  committed,  or  else  long  ago  cleared  up. 


Commencing  with  the  kingdom  of  Dankali  will  tend  to 
make  the  delineation  more  satisfactory  and  clear.  Dan- 
kali  is  that  portion  of  the  country  which  stretches  from 
the  Red  Sea  on  to  the  north-east  ridge  of  the  chain  of 
mountains  that  divides  the  waters  which  flow  westward 
through  Abyssinia,  from  those  small  streams  which  descend 
from  the  east  side  of  these  mountains  to  the  Red  Sea.  On 
the  east,  and  at  Assab,  it  is  bounded  by  part  of  the  king- 
dom of  Adel  and  the  Myrrh  country,  and  on  the  south  by  a 
desert  part  of  the  province  of  Do  waro.*  It  is  in  general  low, 
sandy,  and  dry.  Two  small  rivers  run  in  the  country, 
descending  from  the  highlands  of  Abyssinia  to  the  Red 
Sea,  but  only  conspicuous  during  the  rains. t  This  country  is 
inhabited  by  various  Arab  tribes,  known  under  the  general 
name  of  Dankali,  their  territory  stretching  north  to  the 
neighbourhood  of  Arkeeko.  Some  centuries  ago  it  was  a 
rich  country ;  but  now  it  is  become  very  poor.  It  has, 
besides  the  anchorage  on  the  Bay  of  Assab,  another  port 
called  Bilur  or  Biloul,  at  which  place  (see  map)  Jerome 
Lobo  landed  on  his  mission  to  Abyssinia.  It  was  then 
governed  by  a  king,  whose  capital  or  camp  he  found 
about  ten  miles  distant  on  a  small  river  at  the  foot  of  a 
mountain,  consisting  of  six  tents  and  twenty  cabins  plant- 
ed amongst  thorns  and  wild  trees.  Goats  and  honey  were 
the  chief  products  of  the  country.  After  travelling  for 
many  days,  but  chiefly  by  night,  through  a  country  almost 
destitute  of  water,  it  being  then  (June)  the  dry  season, 
and  abounding  with  serpents,  pursuing  a  northerly  course, 
they  came  to  the  bed  of  a  river  then  dry,  but  water  was 
to  be  found  in  pools.  During  the  rains,  a  very  large  river 
descends  in  this  bed,  and  it  is  that  which  enters  the  sea,  in 
*  Bruce,  vol.  iii.  p.  113.  ^  Ibid. 


the  Bay  of  Bure.  After  a  march  of  some  days  along 
or  by  the  bed  of  the  river,  they  came  to  an  opening  in  the 
mountain  which  is  the  only  pass  between  the  Dankali  and 
Abyssinia,  and  through  which  they  passed,  when  they  im- 
mediately came  to  a  fine  country  abounding  with  springs 
and  streams,  trees  and  verdure.  They  next  crossed  the 
salt  plain,  and  after  a  journey  of  six  or  seven  days  they 
came  to  Fremona.*  The  salt  plain  is  surrounded  with 
very  high  mountains;  it  was  crossed  in  one  night's  march. 
On  the  confines  of  Dankali  and  Abyssinia,  there  is  a  mix- 
ed race  of  Christians  and  Mahomedans  called  Taltal.  f 
This  is  the  name  of  a  people  and  not  of  a  place.  The 
people  of  Dankali  are  sometimes  called  Ghibertis,  which 
means  people  who  are  firm  in  the  faith.  Dankali  is  also 
sometimes  called  Samhar,  which  word  is  in  fact  used  to 
designate  all  the  sea  coast  both  within  and  without  the 
Straits  of  Babelmandeb. 

An  got  comes  next  in  order.  This  was  once  an  impor- 
tant and  celebrated  Province  of  Abyssinia  when  that  coun- 
try was  in  the  zenith  of  its  power  ;  but  it  is  now  much 
circumscribed  and  reduced,  having  been  overrun  and  de- 
solated by  the  Bestuma  Galla  under  Guangoul.  It  is 
bounded  east  by  the  Taltal  population,  belonging  to  the 
state  of  Dankali,  and  the  Dobas,  a  nation  of  Shepherds  in- 
habiting the  mountainous  parts  of  the  country  to  the 
south-west  of  Dankali,  once  Pagans,  but  afterward  Ma- 
homedans. On  the  south  and  south-east,  Angot  is 
bounded  by  the  Province  of  Dowaro ;  on  the  west  by 
Amharai  and  on  the  north-west  by  that  part  of  Begemder 
called  Lasta,  and  on  the  north-east  by  part  of  Tigre. 
This  province  formerly  extended  both  to  the  north  and 
*  Lobo's  Voyages,  Purclias' Collection.  f  Bruce,  vol.  iii,  p.  113, 


the  south  of  the  dividing  range  of  mountains  and  to  the 
south-west  as  far  as  Lake  Haik.  This  was  its  boundary 
when  Alvaraez  visited  it ;  but  now,  according  to  Mr.  Krapf, 
all  the  portion  situated  to  the  south-west  of  the  dividing 
range  is  separated  from  it,  and  belongs  to  the  province  of 
Geshen  or  Yeshen ;  Angot  proper  in  its  south-west  ex- 
tremity commencing  at  the  point  of  the  high  lands,  north 
of  the  River  Ala,  and  where  the  road  separates  to  go 
north-west  to  Lalibala,  and  north-east  to  Sokota.  This 
province  was  once  the  place  of  the  Royal  residence,  and 
was  adorned  with  many  fine  churches,  whicli  have  been 
dilapidated  and  destroyed  by  the  Mahomedan  and  Galla 
conquerors.  Angot  is  very  elevated  and  very  mountainous, 
abounding  with  springs,  rivulets,  and  small  rivers.  The 
soil  in  the  valleys  is  good  and  productive — cultivation  and 
harvest  go  on  together  throughout  the  year.  The  coun- 
try has  large  flocks  of  sheep  and  herds  of  very  fine  cattle. 
Alvaraez  says  he  met  with  some  of  the  finest  wheat  in 
Angot  that  he  ever  saw  in  any  country.  The  climate  in 
the  valleys  is  delicious  ;  but  on  the  mountains  it  is  exceed- 
ingly cold.  Pearce  in  the  month  of  October,  found  hoar- 
frost in  the  morning,  on  the  summits  of  some,  to  the  south 
of  Lake  Assanghe ;  and  where  Mr.  Krapf  crossed  the  di- 
viding range,  he  estimated  the  height  at  1 0,000  feet,  the 
air  keen  and  cold  in  March,  and  the  country  bleak  and 
barren,  with  the  scanty  vegetation  of  extreme  northern 
regions.  The  river  Sabalette,  according  to  Alvaraez,  then 
separated  Tigre  from  Angot,  the  capital  of  which  was 
called  Angeteraz,  situated  on  a  dry  river,  which  shews 
that  its  course  was  short  from  the  mountains,  the  dry  sea- 
son having  tlien  just  begun. 

At  the  river  Aucona,  described  by  Alvaraez   as  a  con- 


siderable  river,  commences  the  province  or  district  of  Bug- 
na  or  Bugana,  the  Portuguese  name  for  Lasta.  It  is 
extremely  mountainous,  six  days'  journey  from  east  to 
west,  and  three  from  north  to  south,  the  climate  cold. 
It  produces  hemp,  fine  wheat,  and  abundance  of  cattle. 
This  account  given  by  Alvaraez  is  confirmed  by  Mr.  Krapf 
and  others  in  every  respect.  In  continuing  his  route 
south  west,  Alvaraez  describes  the  road  as  dreadful, 
"  crawling"  over  stupendous  ridges  and  traversing  deep 
valleys,  hill  after  hill,  and  valley  after  valley,  exactly  as  Mr. 
Krapf  and  others  found  in  parts  immediately  adjoining. 
The  Dobas  were  in  the  days  of  Alvaraez  Mahomedans, 
and  their  country,  which  was  divided  into  twenty  four 
captaincies,  frequently  at  war  with  each  other,  extended 
from  the  borders  of  Angot  fifteen  days' journey  to  the  Sea. 
The  language  of  Angot  began  at  Defarfo,  which  town  was 
called  Angotina.  Near  it,  Alvai-aez  saw  50,000  oxen, 
besides  wheat.  Angot  produces  barley,  millet,  beans,  &c. 
A  district  of  Bugana  or  Lasta,  was  known  in  the  days  of 
Alvaraez  (1520)  under  the  name  of  Acate,  most  probably 
the  modern  Sokota,  in  which  were  many  fine  churches,  and 
the  country  produced  fine  wheat.  Bruce  states,  that  Bu- 
gana Bugna,  or  Lasta,  may  be  said  to  belong  to  Angot ;  but 
he  just  reverses  its  position,  making  it  to  the  east  of  Angot. 
The  name  Corcora  has  given  rise  to  great  confusion  in 
the  Geography  of  this  portion  of  Africa.  There  are  two 
places  of  that  name,  one  Corcora,  a  river  to  the  north-east 
of  Antalow ;  and  the  other  Corcora  of  Angot,  a  place  six 
miles  to  the  east  of  the  river  Sabalette.  By  not  attend- 
ing to  this  distinction,  much  confusion  has  been  created, 
and  one  error  led  to  another. 

*  Vol.  iii.   p.   7. 


The  positions  of  these  places  are  also  well  established  by 
the  following  references.  According  to  Bruce,*  Ginna- 
mora  was  a  small  district  of  Abyssinia  or  Tireg  bordering 
on  the  Dobas,  and  the  people  of  which  King  David  ap- 
pointed to  subdue  the  latter.  Another  proof  of  their  posi- 
tions in  the  south  of  Abyssinia  is  found  in  Bruce,f  where 
he  speaks  of  the  savage  people  called  Azeba,  who  dwell  at 
Azab,  and  of  their  neighbours  the  Doha,  more  savage 
than  they.  King  Yabous  of  Abyssinia,  who  went  to  sub- 
due both,  marched  straight  from  Enderta  to  the  low  coun- 
try about  Azub ;  and  from  thence,  turning  .to  the  right 
upon  the  Dobas,  he  successively  invaded,  desolated,  and 
conquered  both ;  and  having  done  so,  returned  to  Enderta. 
Next  in  order  comes  the  Province  of  Dowaro,  the  true 
position  of  which  has  been  still  less  attended  to.  This 
neglect  has  produced  most  serious  errors  in  the  Geography 
of  this  once  important  portion  of  Africa.  Dowaro  was 
next  to  Angot  on  the  south-east.  It  was  bounded  on  the 
north  by  part  of  the  Kingdom  of  Dankali ;  it  was  sepa- 
rated from  Angot  and  Dankali  by  the  river  Hawash,  and 
bordered  to  the  south  upon  Adel.  The  capital  of  Adel 
was  not  far  from  the  capital  of  Dowaro,  called  Gaza. 
West  of  Dowaro  was  Gedem,  a  hilly  country.  Dowaro  was 
the  most  eastern  portion  of  Abyssinia,  and  bounded  by  the 
44th  degree  of  East  Longitude,:!:  Through  this  province,  the 
Abyssinian  armies  from  Angot,  Tigre  &c.  penetrated  into 
Adel.  On  the  banks  of  a  river  called  Wole,  the  Abys- 
sinian emperor,  Amda  Sion,  fought  a  most  decisive  battle 
with  the  sovereign  of  Adel.  He  passed  the  Wole,  and 
cut  them  off  from  Adel ;  and  the  host  of  the  latter  attempt- 
ing to  retreat  by  passing  the  river  lower  down,  were  at- 
*  Vol.  iii.  p.  173.        +  Vol.  iv.  p.  13G.        ^  Bruce,  vol.  iii.  pp.  2,  7,  ")7. 


tacked  by  the  Abyssinians  then  on  the  right  bank,  and 
either  slaughtered,  or  driven  into  the  river  at  that  point  of 
considerable  depth.  This  river  Wole  of  Bruce,  is  doubt- 
less the  river  Ala  mentioned  by  Mr.  Krapf  fSee  Map. J 

Adjoining  Dowaro,  was  the  kingdom  of  Adel,  and  the 
particular  province  of  that  name.  Adel  or  Adaial,  was 
a  general  name  given  to  the  whole  Mahomedam  popula- 
tion of  the  eastern  Horn  of  Africa.  In  the  early  periods 
of  their  history,  it  was  specially  confined  to  the  country 
extendingfrom  the  Straits  of  Babelraandeb  to  the  confines 
of  Berbera  on  the  sea  coast  and  limits  of  the  Abyssinian 
Empire  inland  ;  but  when  this  kingdom  of  Adel  proper  was 
almost  annihilated  by  the  conquests  of  Amda  Sion,  be- 
tween 1312  and  1342,  the  Mahomedans  fled  to  the 
southward,  and  the  states  subsequently  composing  their 
Empire  went  under  the  name  of  Adel,  and  which  extend- 
ed south  to  Magadosho  and  east  to  Cape  Guardafui  until 
overwhelmed  and  broken  by  the  Somauli  and  Galla.  But 
besides  the  general  Empire  of  Adel,  there  was  a  particular 
portion  of  it  which  went  by  that  name.  The  kingdoms  of 
Adel  and  Mara,  extended,  we  are  told  by  Bruce,  to  the  shores 
of  the  Sea.*  Mara  is  called  the  desert  Kingdom  of  Mara,t 
and  of  which  Zeilah  seems  to  have  been  the  port  and  at  one 
time  the  capital.  Adel  was  bounded  by  the  Dankali  on  the 
north,  and  extended  to  Assab.  To  the  north  and  north- 
west was  Dowaro  ;  to  the  east  the  Sea  from  Assab  to  the 
bays  of  Tajoura ;  and  to  the  south  and  east  Mara.f  The 
capital  was  Aussa,  situated  on  a  rock  by  the  side  of  the 
river  Hawash,  and  not  far  from  the  Lake  of  that  name. 
On  the  west  and  south-west,  Adel  was  bounded  by  the 
Empire  of  Abyssinia,  in  that  portion  of  it  which  is  now 
*  Vol.  iii.  p.  50.  t  Ibid  p.  71. 


known  under  the  name  of  the  kingdom  of  Shoa.  Aussa 
during  the  height  of  the  power  of  Adel,  was  a  place  of 
considerable  impoitance.  The  position  of  the  province 
of  Adel  is  also  well  marked  by  the  fact,  that  before  one 
of  his  struggles  with  the  Sovereign  of  Abyssinia  and  when 
that  Prince  was  about  to  attack  first  the  Dobas,  the  King 
of  Adel  advised  them  to  send  their  wdves  and  children  into 
Adel  for  safety,  which  twelve  clans  of  them  accordinglv 
did ;  while  the  King  of  Abyssinia  made  his  subjects  of 
Wadje  (W''aag)  and  Ganz  cultivate  the  grounds  which  they 
had  left.* 

Mara.  This  province  was  bounded  by  Adel  on  the  north 
and  north-west,  by  the  sea  on  the  east,  and  by  the  Hawash, 
Gan  and  Bali  and  the  State  of  Harrar  on  the  west,  south- 
west, south,  and  by  some  petty  states  to  the  south  of  Zei- 
lah  on  the  south-east.  It  was  comparatively  a  dry  country, 
as  we  find  all  that  country  from  the  Hawash  to  Zeilali 
now  is  ;  but  it  was  in  former  days  powerful  and  rich,  the 
commerce  from  India  to  the  Persian  Gulf  and  Abyssinia, 
and  other  parts  of  Africa  adjacent,  passing  through  it. 
The  capital  of  Hadea  (Hurrur)  was  situated  to  the  south- 
ward and  south-westward  of  Mara ;  Wogla,  and  Pagama, 
small  principalities  dependent  upon  Adel,  being  upon  the 
sea-coast. f  The  centre  of  Mara  was  approached  from  Do- 
waro,  and  from  Dowaro  the  King  of  Abyssinia  crossed  the 
Hawash,  in  order  to  enter  "  the  desert  kingdom  of  Mara.":t 
That  the  kingdom  of  Mara  is  also  applied  to  all  or  a 
portion  of  the  kingdom  of  Adel  near  the  sea  is,  I  think,  ob- 
vious, from  the  account  of  the  King  of  Abyssinia  in  one  of 
his  excursions  passing  the  great  river  Yass,  which  river  is 
stated  to  be  in  the  kingdom  of  Mara.  Advancing  beyond, 
*  Bruce,  vol.  iii.  p.  115.  f  lb.  p.  47.  ^  lb.  p.  GO",  dc. 


he  came  to  the  strong  fortress  of  Dassi,  where  there  was 
no  water,  except  what  was  found  by  digging  in  the  earth 
and  sand.*  Now  Yasso  or  Yass  must  be  the  river  which  is 
formed  by  the  united  streams  of  the  Ala,   the  Ancona,  and 
Sabalette,  called  also  Hanazo  ;  for  except  the  Hawash,  there 
is  no  other  river  in  these  quarters  which  deserves  the  name 
of  great,  f   Salt  says  expressly,  that  the  river  Yass  was  to  the 
north  of  Zeilah.     Being  in  the  rainy  season,  however,  when 
the  king  entered  this  country,  it  may  have  been  the  river 
mentioned  by  M.  Rochet  as  rising  in  Killalou.    When  joined 
by  its  tributaries  to  the  north,  it  would  at  that  season  be 
a  large  stream.     The  inhabitants  of  Aussa  and  Adel  are 
tawny,  not  black,  and  have  long  hair.     They  are    some- 
times called  Ghiberties,  which  means,  strong  in  the  faith. 
The  country  around  the  Hawash,  and  in  the  valleys,  is  called 
Kolla,  or  Khulla,  the  low  country,  to  distinguish  it  from 
the  high   mountainous   districts    of  Abyssinia   and   Shoa. 
It  is  very  fertile,  but  hot,  and  in  the  rainy  season  sickly. 
The  name  is  applied  generally  throughout  Africa,  to  desig- 
nate the  low  from  the  mountainous  districts.     Beyond  the 
Kolla,  or  low  country  mentioned,  is  the  country  named  Sam- 
har,  which  is  a  general  word  used  to  designate  the   sea- 
coast  in  a  country  dry  and  barren. 

Having  thus,  it  is  humbly  conceived,  rectified  the  geo- 
graphical positions  of  these  and  more  important  provinces 
of  Mahomedan  dominion  in  Eastern  Africa,  the  positions 
of  other  places  deserve  less  notice,  and  only  require  to  be 
enumerated  to  be  seen  and  understood  on  the  maps. 

Adjoining  to  and  south-eastward  of  Efat  is  the  district 
of  Gan,  and  adjoining  and  eastward  of  it  again  is  Bali,  a 
small  kingdom,  through  which  the  Gallas  first  rushed  into 
*  Bruce,  vol.  iii.  p.  48.  t  Salt,  p.  102. 


Abyssinia  in  1559,  Bali  is  west  south-west  of  Zeilah,  and 
south-west  of  Mocawa.  Fattigar,  *  once  a  considerable 
province,  lies  to  the  southward  and  south-westward  of 
Gan  and  Bali  of  the  ancient  Mahomedans.  The  capital 
is  called  Bulga,  a  name  which  is  sometimes  given  to  the 
whole  pro\'ince.  To  the  eastward  and  southward  of  these 
last  named  provinces  or  districts,  lies  Hadea,  called  also  Har- 
rar,  or  in  the  Abyssinian  mode  of  pronounciation,  Harraye, 
after  the  capital,  called  also  Harrar.  This  place  was  once 
the  seat  of  a  great  Mahomedan  state,  and  the  centre  of 
their  power  in  this  portion  of  Africa,  after  the  kingdom  of 
A  del  was  overthrown.  In  the  days  of  Alvaraez  the  territory 
of  Hadea  stretched  to  Magadoxa.  To  the  west  of  Hadea, 
he  states,  was  Gan,  and  south-west  from  it  Gurague.  In 
this  kingdom  was  a  great  lake  so  broad,  that  one  side 
could  not  be  seenfi-om  the  other.*  This  must  be  the  Souie 
or  Zawaja,  which  is  stated  by  late  travellers  to  be  very  large 
and  broad.  The  country  around  it  is  very  fine,  but  sickly. 
Mahommed,  surnamed  Gragne,  or  left  handed,  ruled  this 
country  about  the  year  1525  ;  and  soon  after  Alvaraez  left 
Abyssinia,  he  invaded,  and  during  the  reign  of  that  unfor- 
tunate prince,  David,  overran  and  almost  ruined  the  whole 
of  Abvssinia.  He  was  at  length  conquered  and  killed  by 
the  aid  of  some  Portuguese  troops,  Abyssinia  delivered, 
and  Hadea,  like  other  states  in  this  portion  of  Africa,  over- 
whelmed by  the  Gallas. 

According  to  Bruce,!  Hadea  was  a  large  town  with  five 
gates,  and  then  the  capital  of  Adel,  Aussa  being  then  de- 
pendent upon  it.  Ninety-nine  villages  paid  tribute  to  it, 
and  its  Chief  was  constantly  engaged  in  war  with  the 
Abyssinians  and  the  Galla.  It  is  still  a  place  of  some  impor- 
*  Rochet,  p.  lOG.  t  Vol.  vii.  pp.  91,92. 


tance,  and  carries  on  a  considerable  traffic  with  Berbera 
and  Zeilah.  The  distance  to  Berbera  is  twenty  journeys, 
to  Ankobar  seventeen,  and  to  Zeilah,  according  to  Harris, 
fourteen.  Bruce  and  Alvaraez  state  the  latter  distance  to 
be  eight  days'  journey ;  but  this  may  be  the  distance  when 
travelled  by  a  special  messenger.  From  Aussa  to  Harrar 
the  distance  given  by  Bruce  was  seven  days  of  a  messen- 
ger, and  Harris  gives  it  the  same.  According  to  the  ac- 
counts received  by  Harris,  Harrar  exports  to  Zeilah  and 
Berbera  yearly  2000  bales  of  coffee,  besides  wheat.  The 
population  is  agricultural,  use  the  Arabic  language,  and  are 
subject  to  the  Essa  Somauli.  Their  language  has  an  affin- 
ity to  the  Amharic.  The  climate  is  warmer  than  that  of 
Shoa.  From  Errur  to  Harrar  the  road  is  stony,  but  suffi- 
ciently level  to  admit  the  transport  of  guns  or  carriages. 
The  walls  of  the  town  are  twelve  feet  high,  three  feet  thick, 
and  two  hours'  travel  in  circumference.  It  is  situated  in  a 
verdant  valley,  and  is  well  supplied  with  water  from  springs 
in  the  neighbourhood.  The  country  to  the  southward  is 
mountainous,  but  fertile  and  fine,  even  southward  toward 
Magadoxo.  So  Alvaraez  relates  on  the  authority  of  a  king 
of  Abyssinia,  who,  during  his  residence  at  that  court,  went 
with  an  array  to  restore  the  authority  of  the  queen,  who 
had  been  threatened  with  expulsion  from  the  throne  by 
some  of  her  warlike  neighbours.  The  king  defeated  them, 
pursued  them  southward  a  great  distance,  adding,  that  he 
might  have  marched  to  Magadoxo. 

Regarding  the  rivers  in  this  portion  of  Africa,  our  ac- 
counts are  imperfect.  When  the  King  of  Abyssinia  had 
conquered  Zeilah,  he  marched  southward,  subduing  the 
different  small  states,  and,  in  the  early  part  of  his  route, 
passed  the  great  river  Acco.      This  is  most  probably  the 


Wochane  of  modern  maps.  Salt  says  that  it  was  at  no  great 
distance  from  Zeilah,  in  an  opposite  direction  from  the 
Yass,  which  is  to  the  north.  The  king  next  crossed  the 
great  river  Zorat,  wliich  is  an  early  branch  of  the  river 
that  enters  the  sea,  not  far  from  Magadoxo.  The  Zorat 
is  in  the  country  of  a  people  then  called  Oritii.  Salt  says,  * 
that  the  extent  of  the  King  of  Abyssinia's  conquests  in  this 
country,  was  about  200  miles  south-west  of  Zeilah.  This 
river,  which  enters  the  sea  near  Magadoxo,  according  to 
accounts  received  by  the  Embassy  of  Captain  Harris,  f 
enters  the  sea  in  latitude  2°  north,  and  among  other  names 
which  it  has,  is  also  called  Bargama.  This  enables  us  to 
trace  the  early  sources  of  its  principal  stream  in  the  coun- 
try of  Bargama,   or  Bahar-Gama,  as  Bruce  also  calls  it.  + 

From  Hurrur  or  Harar  westward,  the  different  states,  so 
far  as  they  are  correctly  known  to  us,  are  laid  down  in  their 
order,  and  as  near  their  proper  positions  (see  map)  as  the  in- 
formation hitherto  received  will  enable  us.  Some  of  them 
will  require  to  be  more  particularly  alluded  to  hereafter. 

Of  the  magnitude,  power,  and  population  of  all  the  states 
and  provinces  which  composed  the  kingdom  of  Adel  in  its 
best  davs,  we  may  judge  from  the  fact  mentioned  in  Abys- 
sinian history,  as  recorded  by  Bruce,  §  that  when  their 
existence  as  a  people  was  at  stake,  on  the  advance  of 
Amda  Zion  against  them,  they  could  only  bring  into  the 
field  under  their  sixteen  chiefs  or  leaders  44,000  men. 

After  all  Arabia  had  embraced  the  Religion  of  Mahom- 
raed,  her  roving  sons  quickly  found  their  way  into  Africa, 
which  they  first  entered  across  the  Straits  of  Babelmandcb. 
They  soon  spread  themselves  along  the  shores  of  the 
Red  Sea  within  and  without  the  Straits.  For  a  time 
♦  p.  102.    t  Bombay  Times,  July,  1842.      ::  Vol.  iii.  p.  7.     §  lb.  p.  71- 



they  were  subject  to  Abyssinia,  then  a  powerful  state  ;  but 
they  gradually  assumed  an  independent  and  aggressive 
attitude.  Commanding  the  external  trade  of  this  portion 
of  Africa  with  all  the  Eastern  world,  they  became  rich  and 
powerful,  and  from  the  spirit  of  their  Religion,  were  mak- 
ing continual  inroads  into  the  Abyssinian  territories.  This 
provoked  Amda  Zion,  who,  in  the  early  part  of  the  1  3th 
century,  nearly  — as  has  been  already  stated — destroyed 
them,  and  completely  annihilated  the  kingdom  of  Adel.  On 
the  decline  of  their  power,  the  Arabs  were  succeeded  by  the 
Turks,  who  spread  themselves  in  these  parts,  and  by  the 
assistance  of  artillery  and  the  new  mode  of  warfare  which 
it  occasioned,  again  recruited  the  Mahomedan  power  in 
this  part  of  Africa.  During  the  reign  of  the  unfortunate 
Abyssinian  Prince  David,  1525  to  1540,  the  Mahomedans 
overran  and  desolated  the  whole  of  Abyssinia,  till  they  were 
overthrown  by  the  assistance  of  the  Portuguese  ;  and  subse- 
quently the  conquerors  and  the  conquered,  especially  the 
latter,  were  overpowered  by  the  barbarous  Gallas.  This 
savage  people  completely  destroyed  the  Mahomedan 
power  throughout  the  whole  Eastern  Horn  of  Africa,  and 
the  once  great  Abyssinian  Empire  has  been  shockingly 
mutilated  and  curtailed  of  its  territories  by  them. 

But  to  return  to  the  journeys  of  the  travellers  imme- 
diately under  consideration.  Between  Ankobar  and  Angol- 
lala,  a  favourite  residence  of  the  King,  Mr.  Isenberg 
and  his  companion  met  Sahela  Salassieh,  the  King  of  Shoa, 
the  Christian  sovereign  of  a  Christian  people.  By  him 
they  were  cordially  received  and  welcomed  to  Shoa,  and 
under  the  protection  of  such  a  Sovereign,  great  is  the  good 
that  such  worthy  men  may  do  in  Africa.  The  King  of 
Shoa  is  despotic.      Person  and  property  are  alike  at  his 


disposal  throughout  his  dominions.  The  Christianity  of 
Shoa  is  the  tenets  of  the  Alexandrian  Greek  Church,  but 
sadly  debased  and  corrupted  from  its  original  purity. 
Still,  amidst  the  darkness  which  has  overspread  the  land, 
several  of  the  most  important  and  fundamental  truths  of  the 
Gospel  are  known,  acknowledged,  and  understood,  though 
greatly  disregarded.  Greatly  corrupted  and  debased, 
however,  as  it  is,  still,  considering  every  circumstance,  the 
revolutions  and  desolation  which  have  come  upon  them, 
and  with  which  they  have  been  visited  during  a  period  of 
many  centuries,  it  is  surprising  to  find  matters,  as  regards 
the  Christian  Rehgion  in  those  remote  pai'ts  of  Africa,  in 
the  state  that  they  are.  These  place  before  us  the  invinci- 
ble proof,  by  the  fact  witnessed  in  Africa,  as  it  has  before 
time  been  witnessed  and  established  in  both  Europe  and 
Asia,  that  Christianity  once  planted  in  any  country  can 
never  be  eradicated  ;  and  that,  though  for  a  time  it  may, 
from  the  transgressions  of  professors  thereof,  be  subjected 
to  severe  misfortunes,  and  severe  chastisements,  yet  it  will 
finally  raise  itself  above  the  ruins  of  ages  and  of  Empires, 
and  in  the  beauty  of  holiness,  rise  superior  to  all  its  ene- 
mies, and  go  on  conquering  and  to  conquer. 

The  journals  of  Messrs.  Krapf  and  Isenberg  will  suffici- 
ently explain  to  the  reader  their  reception  and  their  pros- 
pects in  Shoa,  the  state  of  Religion,  and  the  manners  and 
the  morals  of  the  people  of  that  kingdom,  as  also  those 
of  some  of  the  neighbouring  people.  Leaving  this,  we 
proceed  to  the  geographical  narrative. 

On  the  28th  January  1840,  Mr.  Krapf  (Mr.  Isenberg 
having  previously  returned  to  England)  accompanied  the 
King  of  Shoa  with  a  considerable  army  on  a  hostile  expe- 
dition to  the  westward,  in  order  to  punish  some  of  his 
C  2 


refractory  Galla  subjects.  M.  Rochet,  the  French  gentle- 
man already  alluded  to,  accompanied  them.  The  army 
marched  in  about  a  true  west-south-west  direction  in  the 
route  as  laid  down  on  the  map.  They  first  crossed  the 
river  Tshalsha,  then  the  Belat,  then  the  Sana  Robi,  then  the 
RosetaandDekama,  the  head  streams  of  the  Ziega  Wodiam, 
and  next  the  Robi,  the  parent  stream  of  the  great  Indores. 
Some  other  smaller  streams  wei'e  passed  in  the  route,  all 
bending  their  courses  to  the  Djimma.  The  country  as 
they  advanced  from  Angollala  became  more  beautiful  and 
fruitful,  every  hill  and  valley  being,  it  may  be  said,  inha- 
bited by  a  distinct  Galla  tribe.  Their  names  are  particu- 
larly enumerated  by  Mr.  Krapf.  The  huts  and  villages  of 
these  people  are  of  the  rudest  and  simplest  kind ;  and  in 
the  perpetual  feuds  that  ensue,  from  their  refusal  to  pay 
the  tributes  exacted,  these  are  generally  swept  away  by 
fire,  but  are  soon  again  erected.  From  a  high  mountain, 
one  of  the  Wogidi  range,  to  the  north  of  the  encampment 
by  the  Robi,  they  saw  the  mountains  of  Gojam  and  the 
Blue  River  or  Abawi,  winding  along  among  them.  The 
march  was  continued  from  the  Robi  still  further  west  south- 
west, till  their  last  camp  was  fixed  within  a  few  miles  of 
the  soui'ces  of  the  Hawash,  proceeding  from  a  small  lake 
with  high  mountains  to  the  south  and  south-west.  At 
this  point  they  were  only  one  day's  (Shoa)  journey  from 
the  Abawi,  or  about  twenty-five  miles,  which  shews  that 
the  Nile  goes  a  little  further  south,  about  twenty  miles, 
than  it  has  hitherto  been  laid  down  on  the  best  maps. 
From  the  point  mentioned,  the  army  marched  east  south- 
east, at  about  a  day's  journey  from  the  Hawash,  running 
along  the  valley  on  their  right :  one  day's  journey  beyond 
it  was  the  first  village  of  Gurague,  the  high  hills  of  which 


were  distinctly  visible  in  the  south-east.  In  their  route 
they  passed  to  the  south  of  the  high  mountain  of  Indotto, 
the  source  of  the  River  Robi,  and  famous  in  Abyssinian 
history  as  the  residence  and  place  of  interment  of  some  of 
their  kings.  From  the  extreme  south-east  point  on  their 
route,  as  marked  in  the  map,  the  army  returned  in  a  north- 
east direction  over  the  high  lands  to  Angollala,  leaving 
Fattigar  on  the  right.  Beyond  Indotto  they  passed  some 
hot  springs.  Fattigar  in  the  days  of  Alvaraez  was  ac- 
counted the  extreme  south-west  point  of  the  kingdom  of 
Adel.  It  is,  he  said,  a  low  Champagne  country,  that  is, 
composed  of  low  hills,  well  cultivated,  and  abounding  with 
cattle,  sheep,  goats,  oxen,  mares,  and  mules.  Mount  Indotto 
was  covered  with  trees,  and  numerous  rivulets  pour  down 
from  its  steep  sides  :  on  its  summit  is  a  considerable  lake. 
Such  are  the  accounts  which  Alvaraez  gives  of  these 
places  when  he  visited  them,  and  the  accounts  received  by 
Mr.  Krapf  are  nearly  to  the  same  effect. 

The  Hawash  near  its  source  meanders  eastward  through 
the  plain,  being  there  about  eight  feet  deep,  and  twenty-five 
broad.  It  separates  the  provinces  of  Souaie,  Gurague,  and 
the  Sedda  Gallas  from  the  Meta  Vochia  Gallas,  Belcheo  Au- 
rippe,  and  part  of  the  Province  of  Zamietta.  The  mountains 
of  Zamietta  are  covered  with  beautiful  cedars.  Mr.  Krapf 
enumerates  the  different  Galla  tribes  from  the  sources  of  the 
Hawash  to  Gooderoo,  which  place  it  is  plain  is  at  no  great 
distance.  The  village  of  Rogie  is  a  famous  market  for  slaves, 
brought  from  the  countries  of  Gingiro,  Gurague,  Enarea, 
and  other  places.     The  price  of  a  slave  is  five  Talari. 

According  to  Bruce  *  Gumar  is  south-west  of  Fattigar, 
and  east  of  Bahar   Gama.     But  this  is  different  from  the 

*  Xo].  iii.  p.  7. 


position  hitherto  given  in  the  best  maps.  The  capital  of 
Gingiro  is  seven  days'  journey  due  east  from  Sakka,  the 
chief  market  of  Enarea.  Cambat  is  eight  days'  journey 
due  east  from  Gingiro,  the  road  to  Gingiro  crossing  the 
Zebee  one  day's  journey  from  the  capital,  and  the  road  to 
Cambat  crosses  the  Zebee,  two  days'  journey  from  Gingiro. 
This  latter  place  was  once  a  powerful  state,  having  four- 
teen states  subject  to  it  ;  but  it  is  now  much  reduced. 
The  capital  of  Cambat  is  called  Sangara.  According  to 
Bruce,  Gurague  was  ten  days'  journey  distant  from  Cambat, 
and  on  the  left  hand  going  eastward.  Gingiro  was  re- 
ported to  Mr.  Krapf  to  be  only  eight  days'  journey  from 
Gurague.  North  of  Gingiro  is  the  country  of  Mugar  or 
Magar,  a  powerful  and  populous  country  inhabited  by 
Christians,  and  next  to  Enarea  on  the  east.  It  is  the 
same  as  Sidama,  a  name  generally  applied  in  these  parts  to 
designate  a  distinct  inhabited  by  Christians.  The  Aroosse 
Gallas  are  east  of  Gurague,  and  so  also  is  the  Sierme  and 
Luban.  AUaba  is  a  kingdom  on  the  road  from  Cambat  to 
Bali.  South-west  by  west  of  Zeilah  is  a  country  called 
Ogge,  inhabited  by  Christians.  South  of  Gurague  is  a 
Galla  tribe  called  Damo,  dwelling  around  the  River  Wiser. 
There  are  a  great  many  Christians  in  Gurague,  and  many 
monasteries.  Much  coffee,  wine,  and  fine  honey  are  pro- 
duced in  Gurague  ;  and  coffee  is  also  abundant  in  the 
countries  around  the  sources  of  the  Hawash,  and  in  fact 
it  is  found  plentiful  in  all  the  countries  from  the  Nile 
southward  to  Enarea  and  Caffa  inclusive.  It  grows  wild 
in  all  these  places. 

A  great  many  of  the  Gallas  have  since  their  invasion  of 
Abyssinia  been  converted  to  Christianity,  and  make 
better  Christians   than   either  the  population  of  Shoa  or 


Abyssinia.  In  general  they  dislike  the  Christian  Religion, 
because,  they  say,  that  the  people  of  Shoa,  who  profess  it, 
are  no  better  than  themselves.  The  great  body  of  them 
cling  to  the  religion  of  their  forefathers,  which  is  pure 
and  simple  Paganism.  Among  them  are  no  Ministers  of 
Religion  of  any  description.  They  worship  a  superior  being 
under  the  name  of  Waake,  the  Ouack  of  Ouare,  the  Galla 
lately  brought  to  France.  They  pay  adoration  to  the  Moon, 
and  also  to  certain  Stars,  and  in  every  tribe  they  worship  the 
Wanzey  tree,  under  which  their  Kings  are  crowned.  Some 
of  them  to  the  south  have  been  converted  to  the  Mahom- 
medan  faith.  The  Pagan  Gallas  have  limited  ideas  of  future 
punishment  ;  their  marriages  are  extremely  simple,  and 
they  have  a  great  affection  for  their  children.  Circumci- 
sion is  known  and  practised  among  them.  It  is  also 
remarkable,  that  "  when  an  elder  brother  dies,  leaving 
younger  brothers  behind  him,  and  a  widow  young  enough 
to  bear  children,  the  younger  brother  of  all  is  obliged  to 
marry  her ;  but  the  children  of  the  marriage  are  always 
accounted  as  if  they  were  the  elder  brother's  ;  nor  does  the 
marriage  of  the  younger  brother  to  the  widow  entitle  him 
to  any  part  of  the  deceased's  fortune."  *  They  are  all 
extremely  filthy  in  their  habits,  anointing  their  heads  and 
bodies  with  melted  butter  or  grease.  They  are  generally 
of  a  brown  complexion  and  well  formed  ;  many  of  them 
are  very  fair  and  almost  white,  arising  probably  from  the 
great  elevation  of  the  country  from  whence  they  origi- 
nally came.  Although  they  have  little  or  no  idea  of 
future  punishment,  yet  "  all  of  them  believe,  that  after 
dcatli  they  are  to  live  again  ;  that  they  arc  to  rise  with 
their  bodies  as  they  were  on  earth,  to  enter  into  another  life, 

*   Bruce,  Vol.  iii.  p.  247. 


they  know  not  where,  but  they  are  to  be  in  a  state  of  body 
infinitely  more  perfect  than  the  present,  and  are  to  die  no 
more,  nor  suffer  grief,  sickness,  or  trouble  of  any  kind." 

In  1841  Mr.  Krapf,  accompanied  by  Dr.  Beke,  now 
engaged  in  endeavouring  to  penetrate  into  the  interior  of 
Africa  from  Shoa  westward,  went  on  an  excursion  to 
the  northward.  They  reached  Kok  Fara,  a  place  about 
forty  geographical  miles  north  of  Ankobar,  and  two  days' 
journey  south  of  the  Berkona.  In  their  route  northwards 
they  passed  the  sources  of  the  Rivers  Awiddi,  Robi,  and 
others,  which  flow  into  the  H awash  ;  and  on  their  return, 
thev  crossed  on  their  immediate  sources  a  few  of  the  rivers 
which  join  to  form  various  rivers  that  flow  to  fill  the 
River  Djimma,  a  considerable  branch  of  the  Nile,  or 
Abawi.  The  province  of  Gheddem  or  Gedem  lay  to  the 
east  and  south-east  of  Kok  Fara,  and  in  the  latter  direc- 
tion there  is  a  wilderness  much  frequented  by  elephants. 
The  country  throughout  their  short  route  was  rugged  and 
mountainous  in  the  extreme, — abrupt  hills,  deep  valleys, 
and  numerous  rivulets  and  small  rivers  (see  map)  at  every 
step.  Ephrata,  one  day's  journey  north  of  Rok  Fara,  is  the 
last  town  in  that  direction  belonging  to  the  kingdom  of 
Shoa.  The  country  beyond  is  under  the  dominion  of  Bora, 
the  ruler  of  Argobba.  On  a  bearing  of  North  38°  west 
from  the  valley  of  Wock  Washa,  is  a  lake  called  Ali  Baks- 
cour,  which  is  of  volcanic  origin. 

The  next  journey  which  requires  to  be  noticed  here,  is 
that  performed  by  Dr.  Beke  from  AngoUala  westward, 
across  the  Abawi  or  Nile  to  Dima  in  Gojam,  where  the 
last  accounts  left  that  traveller.  This  journey  was  under- 
taken in   the  autumn  of  1841.      Dr.  Beke  left  Angollala 

*  Bruce,  Vol.  iii.  p.  244. 


on  the  ninth  of  October.  He  pursued  the  route  as  laid 
down  in  the  map  through  a  country  exceedingly  picturesque 
and  interesting.  Tlie  rivers  ran  in  deep  valleys  with  steep 
hills  on  either  sides  as  their  banks.  The  Bersena,  Tshalsha, 
and  Chakka  join,  and  form  the  Adebai.  The  strong  town 
and  position  of  Dey  is  from  six  hundred  to  seven  hundred  feet 
below  Angollala,  and  situated  at  the  junction  of  the  Adebai 
and  Bersena.  The  continuation  of  the  plateau  of  Shoa  is 
seven  thousand  eight  hundred  and  eighty- seven  feet  above 
the  level  of  the  sea.  Several  stupendous  cataracts  are 
foimd  in  the  rivers  near  Angolalla  and  Tegulet.  The 
road  was  westerly,  always  descending,  and  the  scenery 
very  beautiful.  Where  he  crossed  the  Bersena  the  bed  of 
the  river  was  one  hundred  feet  broad;  but  the  stream 
in  it  then  only  twenty  feet  broad,  the  dry  season  having 
commenced.  The  district  south  of  the  Bersena  is  called 
Enzarro.  Tobacco,  cotton,  maize,  &c.,  were  cultivated 
around  the  rivers.  Enzarro  is  populous  and  fertile.  In 
the  route  westward,  he  passed  rivulets,  Kersa  and  Bon, 
which,  united,  flow  north-west  to  the  Djimma.  Soon 
after  this  he  came  to  the  Ziega  Wodiam,  running  rapidly 
through  deep  valleys  or  dales  to  the  Djimma.  On  each 
side  were  rocky  bluffs.  The  bed  of  the  river  was  about 
two  hundred  feet  broad ;  but  the  breadth  of  the  stream 
then  only  twenty  feet,  and  eighteen  inches  deep.  The 
bottom  was  sand.  The  mountains  are  precipitous,  and 
run  in  ridges  from  south  to  north  on  the  south  side  of 
the  Djimma,  and  from  north  to  south  on  the  north  side 
of  that  river,  the  rivers  running  in  deep  valleys  between 
them.  On  the  left  was  the  deep  and  fine  valley  of  the 
Ziega  Wodiam,  and  that  of  Sofa  to  the  right.  The  cele- 
brated raonasterv  of  Dobra   Libanos  is   about  eight  miles 


south-east  from  Ancorcha.  It  was  at  that  place  that 
Alvaraez  with  the  Portuguese  Embassy  reached  the  court 
of  David,  King  of  Abyssinia.  The  vicinity  of  Angorcha  is 
mountainous  and  barren.  Gold  has  been  found  near 
Dobra  or  Debra  Libanos. 

Proceeding   westward,  Dr.   Beke  crossed  the  River  Sofa 
and  the  valley  through  which  it  runs,  extending  in  a  south- 
west direction,  after  which  he  came  to  high  table  land, 
which  extends  from  the  Abawi  to  Ankobar.     He  reached 
Gera,  the  political  seat  of  Abba  Wial,  the  Governor  of  the 
district,  who  prefers  to  reside  at  Wogidi.     This  place  stood 
in  a  plain  on  a  mountain,  from  the  Chief's  house  in  which 
there  was  a  fine  view  of  the  Djimma  and  a  most  dehghtful 
prospect  of  the  country  as  far  as  the  Abawi  or  Nile,  and 
beyond  it  the  mountains  of  Gojam.     After  leaving  Wogidi, 
he  crossed  the  large  stream  called  Sielrae,  the  general  name 
for  the    Galla  tribes  in  the  neighbourhood;  the   stream 
running  rapidly  over  stones  to  the  Djimma  ;  the  water  from 
fifteen  to  twenty    feet    broad,    but    the  bed    three  times 
that  breadth.     The  road  ran  through  a  beautiful  plain  to 
Lalissa  :  the  country  between  it  and  Sielme  is  studded  with 
villages.       Pursuing  their  route  westward,  they  crossed  the 
torrent  Hidalli,  then  little  Indores  River,  and  next  Great 
Indores  (the  source  of  which  to  the  south  is   the   Robi), 
the  stream  running  between   steep  banks,   then   ten  feet 
broad.     From  the  great  Indores,  the  ride  was   through  a 
lovely  rich  country  to  the  village  Adda ;    after  which  the 
road  becomes  rough  and  rugged  to  Abaddo,  the  residence 
of  the  Galla  Chief  Gianche.     Beyond  Abaddo,  three  hours 
through  jungle,  and  down  a  steep  mountain  principally  on 
foot,  the  River  Djimma,  not  Jumma,  was  reached.     The 
mountains  on  both  sides  dip  into  the  stream,  here  twenty- 


five  to  thirty  yards  broad,  with  a  beach  on  each  side  of 
equal  extent,  and  the  depth  three  feet,  with  a  rapid  cur- 
rent in  the  middle.  Crossing  the  river  they  pursued 
their  way,  in  some  places  through  rich  meadows,  to  Sala- 
kuUa,  a  village  composed  of  reed  huts,  and  built  upon 
an  elevated  projection  of  the  mountain,  lining  the  valley 
of  the  Abawi,  and  the  residence  of  the  Chief  Maria,  the  son 
of  Sabasa,  who  appeared  to  be  as  poor  as  any  of  his 
miserable  subjects,     Salakulla  is   10^  2'  8"  North  Latitude. 

After  some  wrangling  with  this  Chief,  Dr  Beke  pro- 
ceeded to  the  Abawi,  a  few  miles  distant,  passing  the 
villages  of  Sakka  and  Felop.  The  stream  descended  from 
the  north-north-west,  amidst  steep  banks  descending 
in  terraces.  Dr.  Beke  considered  the  river  as  fordable ; 
but  his  guides  would  not  hear  of  passing  it  in  any  other 
way  than  that  to  which  they  were  accustomed,  namely,  on 
inflated  skins,  by  which  means  the  travellers'  baggage  was 
all  wetted  and  much  injured,  and  subsequently  in  drying  it, 
a  considerable  portion  of  it  was  stolen.  He  crossed  the 
stream  at  a  bend  where  it  comes  from  east-north-east.  The 
breadth  then  was  two  hundred  yards,  the  current  on  the 
east  side  two  miles,  and  on  the  west  side  three  miles  per 
hour— so  rapid  as  to  render  it  difficult  to  reach  that  side. 
A  mule  was  carried  down  and  nearly  drowned.  This 
passage  was  effected  at  no  very  great  distance  above  the 
junction  of  the  Djimma.  The  elevation  of  the  bed  of  the 
Nile,  Dr.  Beke  calculated  to  be  three  thousand  feet  above 
the  level  of  the  sea ;  but  which  does  not  agree  with  the 
height  of  its  sources,  or  the  elevation  of  the  Tlain  of  Scnaar 
as  given  by  Bruce,  of  which  more  hereafter. 

From  the  banks  of  the  Abawi,  Dr.   Beke  went  on  to 
Diraa  in  Cojam,  commonly  known  under  the  name  of  Diraa 


Georges,  from  a  monastery  and  church  dedicated  to  St. 
George,  which  stands  in  that  place.  It  is  a  considerable 
place,  speaking  comparatively  as  regards  other  towns  and 
villages  in  this  quarter.  It  stands  in  10"  22'  North  Lati- 
tude. The  town  is  surrounded  with  stone  walls,  and 
there  are  also  several  houses  in  it  built  of  stone.  In  his 
way  to  Dima,  Dr.  Beke  passed  the  villages  of  Shebal,  Kas- 
ham,  and  Arisetot,  the  former  of  which  divides  the  Christian 
from  the  Galla ;  then  the  town  Bichana,  a  considerable 
place,  at  which  a  regular  market  is  held.  Before  reach- 
ing Dima,  the  River  Gad  is  crossed  just  above  a  point 
where  it  falls  over  a  precipice  several  hundred  feet  high. 
Owing  to  the  great  height  of  the  fall,  the  river  in  the  dry 
season  descends  in  complete  spray  ;  but  during  the  rains 
the  sight  must  be  magnificent.  The  country  from  Shebal 
to  Dima  was  generally  undulating  and  a  fine  grassy  plain. 
From  Dima,  Dr.  Beke  intended  to  proceed  to  Goutta,  at  the 
sources  of  the  Nile,  and  thence,  by  the  assistance  of  the 
Chief  of  that  place,  whom  he  met  at  Dima,  and  then 
about  to  be  restored  to  his  authority,  to  proceed  to  Bure 
and  Basso,  in  order  to  prosecute  his  journey  into  the 

In  the  spring  of  1842,  Mr.  Krapf  resolved  to  leave 
Ankobar,  and  proceed  to  Egypt  on  business,  with  the  inten- 
tion of  returning  again  to  Shoa ;  and  he  resolved  to  proceed 
by  Gondar  and  Massowah.  He  accordingly  left  Ankobar 
on  the  10th  of  March,  and  proceeding  to  AngoUala  ob- 
tained from  the  king  permission  to  depart  on  his  intended 
journey.  From  Angollala  he  proceeded  to  Dobra  Berhan, 
or  "hill  of  light,"  a  favourite  residence  of  the  kings,  the 
country  in  the  distance  being  level,  with  small  hills  and 
plains.     The   river  Beresa  runs  south  of  the  village,  the 


banks  high  and  wooded,  with  several  high  cataracts  in  its 
bed.  3Ir.  Krapf's  route  is  distinctly  marked  on  the  map, 
until  he  reached  about  half  way  between  the  Bachilo  and 
Daunt,  where  he  was  forced  to  turn  back  and  proceed 
southward  to  Gatera,  from  which  place  he  travelled  east- 
ward to  Lake  Haik,  resolving  to  take  the  road  to  Mas- 
sowah  by  Antalow.  To  his  journal  the  reader  is  referred 
for  every  thing  particular  that  occurred  on  the  road  ;  the 
various  rivers  and  places  that  he  passed  are  all  distinctly 
laid  dowTi.  The  country  everywhere  was  mountainous 
and  rugged,  the  hills  precipitous,  and  the  rapid  rivers  and 
rivulets  flowing  over  cataracts  through  deep  valleys,  the 
descent  to  some  of  which  was,  in  a  very  short  distance, 
3000  feet.  The  ridges  run  in  the  direction  of  north  north- 
east to  south  south-west,  and  Mr.  Krapf  distinctly  states, 
that  all  the  streams  which  flow  westward  from  the  dividing 
range  are  absorbed  in  the  Djimma  and  the  Bachilo.  This 
is  curious  and  important.  It  shows  that  the  high  land  of 
the  mountains  of  Amid  extends  across  the  Abawi  to  the 
culminating  points  in  Woora  Galla ;  and  hence  the  district 
of  Walaka  is  elevated,  but  wet  and  marshy,  and  conse- 
quently sickly,  as  it  is  stated  to  be ;  and  that  no  river  of 
any  importance  flows,  or  can  flow  through  it  westward  to 
the  Nile.  The  country  in  several  places  is  fertile  and  well 
cultivated,  but  much  distracted  and  injured  by  wars  and 
strifes  between  the  difterent  petty  tribes  and  rulers,  who 
set  the  authority  of  the  sovereign  of  Abyssinia  on  the  one 
hand,  and  the  King  of  Shoa  on  the  other,  equally  at  defi- 
ance, i^fter  crossing  the  river  Gonagonit,  came  to  a  tre- 
mendous chasm,  three  feet  wide  and  200  feet  long ;  but  of 
unknown  and  enormous  depth.  It  is  called  Tegulet  Wat, 
or  "the  devouring  depth  of  Tegulet."     At   Zalla  Dengai 


the  cold  was  great.  The  river  Mofer  separates  Shoa  from 
Mans.  This  stream  receives  many  tributaries.  It  rises  in 
Mount  Tamabar  and  flows  to  the  Djimma.  The  chmate  of 
Mans  is  very  cold,  which  shows  its  great  elevation.  Sheep 
in  Mans  have  long  black  wool.  The  soil  is  black,  and  pro- 
duces wheat,  barley,  peas,  beans,  hogs  and  sheep  in  abun- 
dance. The  river  Xetmat  where  crossed,  was  then  only 
fourteen  feet  broad.  The  district  of  Sala  is  bounded  north 
by  the  river  Aflamat,  and  east  by  Gheddem.  West  of  the 
route  was  a  large  deep  basin,  into  which  the  rivers  Igam, 
Aflamat,  and  others  join,  and  afterward  form  the  Knowa 
under  the  general  name  of  Gherid,  and  which  joins  the 
Djimma,  near  Koom  Dangai  in  Shoa  Meda.  In  his  route 
hence,  Mr.  Krapf  crossed  the  river  Shai,  which  goes 
through  the  famous  Lake  Alebai  on  the  west  of  Mans, 
after  leaving  which  the  river  is  called  Shammas,  and  joins 
the  Djimma.  This  lake  is  a  day's  journey  in  circumference. 
The  tradition  is,  that  it  was  formed  by  a  destruction  or 
visitation  similar  to  that  which  destroyed  Sodom  and  Gom- 
morrah.  This  is  the  lake,  most  probably,  which  is  alluded 
to  by  Dr.  Beke  and  Mr.  Krapf  as  bearing  north  38°  west 
from  the  valley  of  Woch  Washa.  About  the  river  Ghe- 
doot  the  country  is  volcanic,  large  rocks  thrown  down  lay 
all  around,  and  at  Tagabile,  seen  at  a  distance,  mineral 
waters  were  found.  The  river  Kachenu  was  twenty-five 
feet  broad,  but  the  banks  separate  eighty  feet.  It  is  joined 
below  by  the  rivers  Katame  and  Woia,  which  come  from  the 
north  of  Shoa.  The  junction  takes  place  in  the  north- 
west, at  Dair,  a  frontier  town  and  seat  of  the  governor  of 
the  frontiers.  The  river  Woia  separates  Woolla  Galla  from 
Shoa.  The  mountains  in  Woolla  Galla  are  sometimes  plain 
and  level.     The  highest  in  this  country  are  Sako,  on  which 


hailisfrequently  seen,  and  Korhora  and  Yelt.  Gaterais  the 
capital  of  Woolla  Gall  a,  ruled  by  Adara  Bille ;  and  east  of 
his  territory  is  Worra  Galla,  under  the  ruler  Beroo  Soobo. 
The  mountainous  range  to  the  east  are  part  of  the  Efatian 
or  Chakka  chain.  The  boundary  of  the  Worra  Galla  to 
the  east  is  the  country  of  Adel  and  the  territory  of  Iman 
Faris,  who  resides  in  Gherfa.  After  leaving  Tartar  Amba, 
saw  to  the  right  two  high  steep  hills,  called  upper  and 
lower  Chaffa.  Tanta  is  the  capital  of  the  Tribe  Worra 
Himana,  where  Imam  Liban  resides.  The  power  of  this 
Chief  thirty  years  ago  extended  over  Geshen,  and  to  the 
frontiers  of  Lasta.  Its  extent  now  is  five  days'  journey 
from  east  to  west.     Tanta  contains  600  inhabitants. 

Here  it  may  be  remarked,  how  necessary  it  is  to  recon- 
sider conclusions  come  to  on  the  spot,  and  how  persons  at 
a  distance  can  see  errors  which  travellers  on  the  spot  do  not 
perceive.  Thus  Mr.  Krapf  says  of  the  rivers  Adella  and  Mel- 
cho  Chilla,  that  the  former  comes  from  mount  Korhora,  and 
the  latter  from  mount  Sako.  Soon  after,  when  he  came 
to  travel  eastward  from  Gatera  to  Lake  Haik,  he  passed 
the  river  Gherado,  which  ran  north-west  to  the  Bachilo, 
which  cuts  off  the  sources  of  the  two  rivers  mentioned  in 
the  mountains  alluded  to,  and  shows  that  their  true  sources 
are  much  short  of  these  mountains,  and  to  the  west  of  the 
river  Gherado  last  mentioned. 

The  bed  of  the  Bachilo  was  found  to  be  100  feet  broad, 
but  the  breadth  of  water  in  it  only  thirty  feet,  and  about 
half  a  foot  deep.  It  is  a  fine  river,  and  takes  up  the  wa- 
ters of  all  the  rivers  and  torrents  in  those  parts.  From  it 
there  was  a  fine  view  to  the  west  of  the  monastery  of  Sa- 
mayda  in  the  north-cast  of  Gojam,  the  mountains  of  Be- 
gemder,  and  capital  of  Ras  Ali.     Dcbra  Sabor  was  also  in 


view  from  an  eminence  to  the  eastward  of  the  point  where 
the  Bachilo  was  first  crossed.  The  course  of  the  Bachilo 
is  exceedingly  winding  and  circuitous.  The  plain  of  Da- 
tanta  to  the  north  of  the  Bachilo  was  rich  in  cattle  and 
grass,  and  indicated  considerable  wealth.  The  road  to 
Maitsha  was  in  the  south-west  corner  of  the  plain.  When 
advanced  about  six  miles  beyond  the  Bachilo,  Mr.  Krapf 
was  obliged  to  turn  back,  and  crossing  the  Bachilo  higher 
up  returned  to  Gatera  by  Tartar  Amba  and  Totola,  the 
latter  one  of  the  greatest  markets  in  Abyssinia,  and  fre- 
quented by  merchants  from  Gondar,  Tigre,  and  Shoa.  Be- 
roos  people  trade  with  theDannakils  andTajoura.  Leaving 
Totola  and  advancing  to  Gatera,  they  had  a  most  magnifi- 
cent view  of  the  territories  of  the  Woolla  Galla.  Ranges 
of  mountains  run  from  south  or  south-east  to  north-east  and 
north,  each  range  separated  from  the  other  by  a  plain  or  a 
river,  or  a  torrent.  The  rivers  run  chiefly  to  the  Bachilo, 
which  collects  its  waters  from  100  miles  round  to  carry 
its  tribute  to  the  Nile.  Woorra  Kallo,  or  "Woolla  Galla,  is  the 
place  where  the  caravans  going  to  Aussa  and  Tajoura  assem- 
ble. At  Gatera  Mr.  Krapf  was  robbed  and  very  ill-treated 
by  the  Chief  Adara  Bille,  from  whom  he  escaped  after 
some  difficulty. 

On  the  6th  of  April,  Mr.  Krapf  left  Gatera,  and  pass- 
ing by  Totola  marched  through  a  beautiful  valley  intersected 
by  the  river  Gherado,  which  runs  north-west  to  the  Bachilo, 
he  came  to  the  Berkona,  which  descending  from  the  north- 
west, soon  after  turns  to  the  east,  and  runs  to  the  country 
of  Adel.  Totola  is  in  Woorra  Kallo.  The  district  of  To- 
tola extends  from  ten  to  fifteen  miles.  The  plain  is  watered 
by  aqueducts,  and  has  abundance  of  cattle.  W^iere  crossed, 
the  river  Berkona  was  twenty  feet  wide,  and  one  span  deep ; 


its  source  six  miles  distant,  in  the  hill  Boroo.  Beyond  the 
Berkona  he  came  to  mount  Moffa,  the  capital  of  Amana, 
and  in  course  of  a  few  miles  fui-ther  came  to  the  celebrated 
lake  called  Haik.  Most  of  the  waters  of  Woorra  Kallo 
join  the  Berkona.  The  approach  to  lake  Haik  was  through 
a  beautiful  fertile  valley,  the  soil  of  which  was  a  black 
mould.  This  celebrated  lake  is,  according  to  Mr.  Krapf, 
about  forty-five  miles  in  circumference  ;  its  length  from 
east  to  west  greater  than  its  breadth.  It  has  several  bays, 
and  within  a  few  hundred  yards  of  the  north-west  corner, 
is  an  island  called  Debra  Nayoodquad,  (hill  of  thunder) 
distant  from  the  mainland  about  260  yards.  The  island  is 
almost  square,  with  a  monastery  and  100  houses.  The 
surrounding  scenery  is  fine,  and  the  climate  is  agreeable.  On 
the  east  and  south  sides  there  are  steep  mountains  ;  but  on 
the  other  sides  the  shores  are  low.  Alvaraez  says,  that  it 
overflows  at  two  places  during  the  rains,  which  must,  of 
course,  be  on  the  west  side,  and  the  superabundant  waters 
must  accordingly  flow  into  the  Berkona.  High  mountains 
stood  to  the  north  and  north-west,  one  of  which  was  mount 
Sagorat,  at  the  northern  foot  of  which  rose  the  river 
Bachilo,  not  far  from  the  sources  of  the  Berkona :  extreme 
high  land,  however,  rising  between  them. 

Quitting  Lake  Haik,  Mr.  Krapf  set  out  on  his  arduous 
journey  to  Antalow.  After  passing  the  village  of  Bora, 
he  crossed  the  river  Mille,  then  fifteen  feet  broad,  and  three 
inches  deep.  It  springs  from  the  foot  of  Mount  Mofa,  and 
joining  the  Berkona  flows  into  the  Hawash.  The  range 
of  mountains  previously  alluded  to,  surrounds  Abyssinia 
like  a  girdle  toward  the  east  and  north-east.  The  Mille 
flowed  through  a  beautiful  valley,  the  soil  of  which  was 
rich  with  trees  and  grass,   but  with  little  cultivation.     Be- 


yond  the  Mille  is  the  celebrated  mountain  in  Geshen,  for- 
merly the  state  prison  for  the  royal  family  of  Abyssinia. 
The  proper  name  is  Amba  Israel,  corrupted  to  Ambassil. 
It  extends  from  nine  to  twelve  miles  in  a  northerly  direction, 
and  is  very  high  and  steep,  with  several  conspicuous  peaks. 
It  is  so  steep  and  so  high  that  Mr.  Krapf  conceived  a  can- 
non ball  would  not  reach  its  summit.  Mount  Geshano 
lays  to  the  north  west  of  Mount  Amba  Israel.  The 
Governor  of  the  mountain  was  Ali  Beroo  :  the  population 
independent  Mahomedans.  The  river  Mille  runs  through 
the  districts  of  Scoba  and  Goombesa,  and  passing  them 
traverses  the  district  of  Wochale.  Near  Lubso  they  en- 
tered the  country  or  province  of  Yeshoo,  The  village  of 
Mersa  is  frequented  by  merchants  from  Yeshoo.  The 
country  east  to  the  Dannakils  was  almost  a  wilderness. 
The  River  Ergibba  runs  to  the  country  of  Adel,  and  on  its 
banks  are  many  coffee  trees.  The  people  of  Yeshoo  have 
a  curious  custom  of  standing  still  and  turning  their  backs 
to  a  stranger  whom  they  may  meet,  till  they  receive  a  bless- 
ing. Something  of  this  kind  is  witnessed  in  Georgia,  and 
in  countries  to  the  south  of  the  Cacausus.  The  village  of 
Mersa  is  a  little  beyond  the  river  of  that  name,  which 
comes  from  the  northwestward,  and  carries  a  considerable 
quantity  of  water  in  its  bed.  The  climate  in  the  plains  is 
beautiful,  and  cotton  and  red  pepper  grow  on  the  banks  of 
the  river.  After  crossing  the  Mersa  they  came  to  Woldaia, 
the  capital  of  Dejasmady,  the  Governor  of  Yeshoo.  Pur- 
suing the  journey  north-east,  they  crossed  the  river  Ala, 
having  previously  crossed  a  stream  called  the  black  water, 
both  of  which  run  to  the  eastward.  The  Ala  was  a 
considerable    stream.       Stopping  at  the  village   of    Shal 


for  tlie  night,  they  next  day  ascended  the  high  land  which 
divides  Yeshoo  from  Lasta  and  the  northern  Angot. 

Shal  is  in  the  district  of  Sacke.  In  the  forenoon,  the 
travellers,  after  passing  many  rivulets,  reached  an 
elevated  spot  where  the  road  divides,  the  one  going  north- 
west to  Lalibela,  and  the  other  north-east  to  Sokota  and 
Antalow.  Angot  commenced  immediately  to  the  east. 
The  mountains  run  north-east  from  south  and  south- 
west :  Angot  is  now  dependent  upon  Yeshoo.  At  some 
distance  to  the  east,  saw  a  very  high  mountain  in  Angot 
inhabited  by  the  Raia  Gallas.  A  river  runs  through  a 
plain  in  the  province,  the  magnitude  of  which  was  uncer- 
tain. During  the  night  they  stopped  at  the  village  of 

Leaving  Saragodel  they  ascended  till  about  9  a.m. — the 
road  a  complete  wilderness.  The  highland  of  Lasta  and 
Angot  is  very  cold,  and  quite  different  from  the  climate  of 
Yeshoo.  There  were  no  trees  ;  saw  some  foxes,  no  birds, 
nor  travellers,  nothing  but  desolation  and  a  coarse  grass 
called  Goossar,  the  growth  of  most  elevated  cold  places — 
the  height  here  supposed  to  be  10,000  feet  above  the 
level  of  the  sea.  After  mid-day  they  came  to  a  few  houses, 
and  from  two  o'clock  they  began  to  descend,  and  the 
country  began  to  improve,  and  water  became  abundant. 
They  found  many  fine  birds,  and  juniper  trees,  and  nume- 
rous deep  beds  of  rivulets,  all  of  which  had  their  courses 
to  the  north-west.  The  boundary  mountains  of  Lasta 
and  Wofila,  send  off  streams  which  run  to  Adel.  At  the 
village  of  Deldie,  or  the  bridge,  the  travellers  rested  for  the 
night.  This  point  is  a  place  where  the  merchants  going 
north  to  Waag  and  Sokota,  or  south  from  these  places 
and  Wofila,  to  Wolduia  and  Yeshoo,  generally    assemble. 


Quitting  Deldei,  they  marched  eastwai"d  toward  Wofila, 
and  Lake  Assanghe,  in  order  that  they  might  avoid  Sokota, 
the  Governor  of  which  was  stated  to  be  a  rude  man ;  and 
crossing  the  river  Tarir,  came  to  Endalke.  This  village 
belongs  to  Wofila,  and  is  dependent  upon  the  Governor  of 
Waag.  The  road  was  intersected  by  rills  and  brooks.  At 
a  hamlet  in  Tantara,  saw  a  man  ploughing.  They  took  the 
course  more  northerly  in  order  to  avoid  the  Raia  Gallas. 
The  road  to  Wofila  was  to  the  west  of  the  Convent  Sham- 
madoo  Mariam.  Road  traversed  hilly,  but  not  rocky  coun- 
try J  and  from  the  hills  could  see  in  the  north  north-west, 
the  mountains  of  Lasta  and  the  towering  snowy  peaks  of 
Samen,  like  large  towers.  The  hilly  country  of  Lasta  and 
Waag,  as  far  as  the  eye  could  reach,  exactly  resembled  the 
raging  waves  of  the  sea  in  a  storm.  Deldei  is  the  boun- 
dary between  the  government  of  Waag  and  that  of  Djes- 
mady  Paris.  Waag  is  in  the  country  of  the  Agows.  Lasta 
is  bounded  south  by  Yeshoo,  Wadela,  and  Angot ;  west  by 
Begemder ;  north  by  Waag ;  and  east  by  Angot  and  the 
Raia  Galla  tribes.  The  principal  towns  of  Wofila  are 
Zelga,  Bora,  and  Lake  Assanghe.  It  is  bounded  north- 
east by  Tigre.  The  Agows  are  different  from  all  other 
Abyssinians.  In  Wofila,  the  country  is  better  cultivated 
than  in  Waag  and  Angot. 

Pursuing  their  course  northward,  they  reached  Lat,  a 
considerable  village  to  the  eastward,  say  east  south-east, 
of  which  about  eight  to  nine  miles  was  the  Lake  Assanghe 
and  village  Wofila,  near  which  and  south-eastward  of  it 
was  another  but  smaller  lake.  Lake  Assanghe  is  sur- 
rounded by  mountains.  It  is  not  so  large  as  Lake  Haik, 
and  has  no  island  in  it.  In  the  vicinity  there  are  many 
villages.     Zelga  is  due   east   of  Lat.     Leaving  Lat  they 


traversed  for  a  little  the  dry  bed  of  a  river  which  runs  to 
the  Tacazze,  then  only  a  few  days'  journey  distant.     They 
were  still  far  from  Antalow.     Shortly  after,  they  crossed 
another  river,  its  course   north  north-west,  bearing   down 
in  its  bed  a  considerable  body  of  water.     From  this  cross- 
ing a  mountain,  they  on  the   following  day  crossed  the 
river    Ghebia,  another  tributarv  to   the  Tacazze.      They 
then  entered  the  district    of  Bora  and  passed  the  Shum- 
shato,  a  tributary  to  the  Tacazze,  and  with  much  water  in 
its  bed.     The  banks  of  the  river  were  adorned  with  beauti- 
ful  trees.      Still   in  the  Agows   country.     Ascending  as 
thev  proceeded,  they  had  a  good  view  of  the  province  of 
Waag,  which  is  mountainous,   resembling  in   this  respect 
Geshen  and  Northern  Shoa.     It  is  susceptible  of  cultiva- 
tion, and  could  maintain  a  much  larger  number  of  people 
than  it  now  does.     It  is  every  where  intersected  by  deep 
dales,  steep  hills,  and  torrents.     Sokota  is  the  principal 
market.     On  the  twentieth  of  April  they  crossed  the  river 
Tyana.     It  is  a  fine  river,  and  carries  much  water  in  its 
bed,  and  is    a  tributary   to  the   Tacazze.       It  separates 
Waag   from   the   province   of  Enderta,  formerly  part  of 
Tigre.     Every  spot  on  its  banks  is  well  cultivated.     The 
climate  of  Waag  is  beautiful,  healthy,  and  has  a  fine   air. 
Enderta  is  low  and  rather  flat.     Pursuing  their  journey 
over  a  mountain,  and  through  a  thorny  uncultivated  coun- 
try,   first    north-east,    and    then    turning    westward   and 
crossing  the  rivulet  Gumato,  they,  after  a  long  and  fatigu- 
ing  journey,  entered    Antalow,    the   capital  of  Enderta. 
This  town  is  much  decayed,  and  most  of  the  houses  had 
been  ruined  in  the  wars  which  had  taken  place  with  the 
neighbouring  countries.     When  Salt  visited  it  in  1805  and 
last  in  1 809,  it  was  the  capital  of  the  Ras  Welled  Salesse, 


and  of  consequence  a  place  of  some  importance,  though 
even  then  it  was  not  very  large  nor  poj^ulous.  Its  situation, 
however,  was  commanding  and  fine.  From  Antalow,  Mr. 
Krapf  pursued  his  journey  by  Mount  Taranta  to  Mas- 
sowah,  at  which  place  he  embarked  to  proceed  to  Egypt. 

Having  traced  Mr.  Krapf  to  Antalow,  and  in  his  jour- 
ney from  Ankobar  to  that  place,  or  by  far  the  larger  por- 
tion of  it,  through  a  country  never  before  travelled  over  by 
any  European,  it  becomes  of  some  consequence  to  ascertain 
as  near  as  possible  the  position  of  Antalow.  Mr.  Krapf's 
route  from  Lake  Haik  is  in  point  of  distance  made  good, 
and  in  bearings  less  easterly  and  more  restricted  than  it  is 
considered  they  might  actually  have  been.  From  the 
strict  letter  of  his  narrative,  Antalow  should  be  a  little 
more  to  the  eastward  and  the  northward,  than  the  point 
where  it  is  placed  on  the  map.  He  himself  states  point- 
edly that  the  road  to  Antalow  by  Lake  Assanghe  would 
have  been  the  nearest,  thus  indicating  a  more  easterly  posi- 
tion to  the  place.  His  last  bearing,  namely,  proceeding 
west  to  Antalow,  puzzles  me,  as  it  is  seldom  the  guides  so 
greatly  overshoot  their  mark  ;  and  it  is  by  no  means  impro- 
bable that  in  this  case  the  bearing  has  been  reversed,  and 
that  his  last  journey  to  Antalow  was  to  the  east,  and  not  to 
the  west.  If  so,  it  would  just  place  Antalow  in  a  position 
where  the  road  coming  from  the  south  by  Lake  Assanghe 
would  have  been  the  nearest  to  Antalow.  In  Salt's  first 
voyage  *  the  Latitude  of  Antalow  from  three  observations 
is  given  12°  48'  north.  In  Salt's  last  voyage  it  is  given 
13°  23'  and  the  Longitude  of  Chilecut  by  observations  of 
the  Moon  39    33'  east,  but  which  he  acknowledges  was 

*  Valentia,  vol.  iii. 


a  doubtful  observation,  and  gave  the  position  too  far  to 
the  west.  In  the  midst  of  such  discrepancies,  there  is  no 
certainty  nor  safety,  and  therefore  it  becomes  necessary 
to  fix  the  point  from  bearings  and  distances  which,  as  we 
are  able  to  take  and  to  check  from  various  quarters, 
may  be  relied  on  as  nearly  correct,  and  which  we  are 
fortunately  enabled  to  do  in  a  satisfactory  and  convincing 

Bruce  places  Dixan  from  actual  observation  in  40^^ 
7'  east  Longitude  ;  but  which  I  have  altered  to  40°  2',  tak- 
ing the  Longitude  of  Massowah  by  Ruppel,  the  difference 
being  the  error  of  Bruce,  if  error  it  is,  which  I  much  ques- 
tion. From  Dixan  to  Antalow,  the  journey  of  Salt  was  to 
the  eastward  of  south,  and  their  return,  as  also  Mr.  Krapf's 
route  from  Antalow  to  Dixan  and  Halai,  was  to  the  west- 
ward of  north.  Attagerat,  Mr.  Ruppel  tells  us,  is  only 
two  and  a  half  days'  journey  from  the  sea  in  the  Bay  of 
Amphila.  This  brings  its  position  to  the  east  of  its  pre- 
sent place.  But  the  following  shews  still  more  clearly  the 
eastern  position  of  Antalow.  When  two  days  journey 
north  of  Chehcut,  Mr.  Krapf  states  that  they  were  then 
only  five  days'  journey  from  Bure  on  the  coast  of  the  Red 
Sea.  The  Ras  of  Abyssinia  in  a  conversation  he  had  with 
Mr.  Salt  about  the  best  and  nearest  port  to  Antalow  from 
which  the  trade  with  England  and  India  could  be  opened 
up  confirms  this,  when  he  stated  that  Bure  was  only  four 
days'  journey  (messengers  it  is  supposed)  from  Antalow 
with  a  good  camel  road,  and  wxll  supplied  with  water. 
The  vicinity  of  the  sea-coast  to  Antalow  is  also  clearly 
shewn  by  the  observation  which  Salt  and  the  other  officers 
of  the  Embassy  made  in  reply  that  they  considered  Belur 
or  Biloul  as  more  eligible  on  account  of  "  the  vicinity  of 


the  place  to  his  capital."  *  and  we  find  that  a  messenger 
dispatched  for  the  Chief  of  Bure,  returned  with  him  to 
Antalow  in  about  ten  days.  When  Pierce  left  Antalow,  in 
order  to  escape  from  the  service  of  the  Ras,  he  travelled  due 
south,  and  reached  Wofila  to  the  east  of  Lake  Assanghe  ; 
and  as  he  makes  no  particular  mention  of  crossing  rivers  in 
his  route  south,  so  it  is  clear  he  must  have  been,  as  he  was, 
some  distance  to  the  east  of  Mr.  Krapfs  course  going  north. 
This  further  establishes  the  eastern,  or  rather  the  more  eas- 
tern position  of  Antalow.  About  forty  miles  from  Antalow, 
Pierce  came  to  the  province  of  Wojjerat ;  sixteen  miles  more, 
to  a  plain  inhabited  by  a  portion  of  the  Dobas  ;  fourteen 
miles  more,  to  lyah,  a  town  belonging  to  the  Assubo  Galla, 
and  fourteen  miles  more  (in  time  forty-two  hours)  toMocurra, 
one  mile  and  a  half  from  Lake  Assanghe  to  the  east.  This 
distance  gives  not  only  the  more  eastern,  but  also  the  largest 
supposed  northern  point  for  the  position  of  Antalow. 

When  Mr.  Krapf  crossed  the  Tyana  and  other  rivers, 
it  was  at  the  close  of  the  dry  season,  when  they  were 
necessarily  at  the  lowest ;  consequently,  the  considerable 
quantity  of  water  which  was  found  in  the  beds  of  the 
Tyana  and  the  Shumshato,  shews  that  their  sources  must 
have  been  some  distance  to  the  eastward,  and  that  Pierce 
must  have  passed  them  close  to  their  sources,  where  they 
were  such  diminutive  streams  as  not  to  be  known  or  worth 
any  particular  notice.  This  view  of  the  subject  is  not 
only  borne  out  by  Mr.  Krapfs  narrative,  but  corroborated 
by  the  route  of  Alvaraez  in  a  wonderful  degree.  Corcora, 
from  which  he  marched  south-east,  along  "  a  goodly 
river "  for  six  hours,  this  being  in  the  rainy  season,  is 
one  day's  journey  from  the  famous  salt  plain  of  Abyssinia, 
*  Valentia,  vol.  iii.  pp,  39,  40,  &c. 


In  his  first  day's  journey  from  Corcora,  he  crossed  a  stu- 
pendous mountain,  at  the  only  point  where  it  was  passable, 
for  a  distance  of  sixtv  miles.  After  this  he  reached  the 
town  of  Manadele,  certainly  the  Mantilli  of  Salt,  south- 
east from  Antalow.  Manadele  is  situated  in  a  cham- 
pagne country,  six  miles  by  two  in  extent,  abounding  in 
grain,  which  shews  that  it  must  be  well  watered.  It  is 
surrounded  by  very  high  mountains,  and  was  then  a 
place  of  great  trade,  being  frequented  by  merchants  from 
ever}'  part  of  Abyssinia,  Egypt,  Greece,  Arabia,  Ormuz, 
India,  and  Adel.  It  was  close  to  the  countiy  of  the 
Dobas,  but  subject  to  Tigre.  From  Manadele,  Alvaraez 
pursued  his  course  to  Defarfo,  and  thence  travelling  by  the 
foot  of  the  mountain  of  Ginnamora,  from  whence  issued 
many  small  streams,  he  came  to  the  river  Sabalette,  the 
boundary  of  Tigre  in  that  quarter.  His  route  by  Mount 
Ginnamora  was  on  its  south-east  side,  the  barrier  and 
the  division  of  the  waters  between  the  sources  of  the 
Tyana  &c.  flowing  north-west,  and  the  Sabalette  and  others 
flowing  south-east.  The  positions  of  these  places  and 
rivers  thus  represented,  give  the  distance  from  the  western 
point  of  the  Dobas  to  Assab  fifteen  days'  journey,  the  time 
stated  by  Alvaraez,  very  correctly. 

From  Lake  Assanghe,  Pearce  pursued  his  journey 
westerly,  passing  to  the  east  of  the  Lake,  which  is  three 
days'  journey  in  circuit,  and  called  in  the  language  of 
Tigre  "  Tsada  Bahri,"  or  White  Sea,  and  to  the  west  of 
the  smaller  lake,  till  he  came  to  the  village  of  Dafat,  on 
the  summit  of  Mount  Dafat,  where  he  rested  for  the  night. 
Here  he  found  the  cold  very  keen,  and  hoar  frost  on  the 
ground  on  the  morning  of  October  1st.  He  then  pur- 
sued his  way  west,  about  thirty-five  miles,  and  came  to  the 



village  of  Marzalla,  near  the  sources  of  the  Tacazze,  called 
"  am  Tacazze,"  or  the  eyes  of  the  Tacazze,  which  are  half 
a  day's  journey  east  of  Lalibela,  or  rather  the  place  where 
Lalibela  once  stood,  but  which  is  now  occupied  by  a  vil- 
lage called  Bobbala  by  Lefevre's  informant.  From  the 
sources  of  the  river,  he  followed  the  windings  of  the 
stream  to  Mukkine,  a  distance  of  about  fifteen  miles, 
eight  hours.  Here  the  river  was  thirty  feet  broad.  From 
this  place  he  travelled  north  by  east  to  Sokota,  the  capital 
of  Lasta,  about  half  way  from  which,  and  west  of  his  route 
near  the  Tacazze,  was  the  high  mountain  of  Salah-ferre. 
This  place  or  mountain  is  eight  miles  east  of  the  river, 
and  Sokota  ten.  The  language  of  the  country  is  Amharic. 
Sokota  is  larger  than  Antalow,  and  about  six  days' journey 
distant  from  it.  Soon  after  leaving  Sokota,  Mr.  Pearce 
entered  the  country  of  Waag,  and  journeying  three  days 
northward  along  the  banks  of  the  river  through  the  coun- 
try of  Gualieu,  inhabited  by  the  Agows,  to  a  point  on  the 
Tacazze,  about  thirty  miles  south  of  the  town  of  Maisada 
in  the  district  of  Avei"gale.  From  Mukkine  to  this  point, 
Pearce  had  not  met  with  any  river  of  importance  running 
into  the  Tacazze,  though  he  had  crossed  in  the  neighbour- 
hood of  Mukkine  many  small  streams  and  rivulets.  On 
the  9th  October  he  crossed  the  Tacazze,  and  entered  the 
province  of  Samen.  The  river,  where  he  crossed  it,  was 
three  hundred  yards  broad.  As  the  rainy  season  was, 
it  may  be  said,  over,  I  cannot  help  thinking  that  there  is 
some  mistake  here  about  the  breadth  of  the  river,  and  that 
vards  have  been  by  mistake  substituted  for  feet ;  and  even 
at  this  latter  breadth,  it  is  plain  that  some  powerful  tribu- 
taries must  join  it  from  the  western  side  between  Mukkine 
and  this  point,  a  distance  of  about  fifty  miles,  and  these 


must  be  still  more  powerful,  if  the  river  is  really  900 
feet  broad.  But  this  does  not  at  all  agree  with  its  breadth 
near  Maisada,  as  given  by  Mr.  Salt,  at  fifty  yards  and 
three  feet  deep,*  and  still  further  down  by  Bruce  200  yards 
in  the  dry  season. 

That  the  river  Arequa,  mentioned  by  Salt,  is  the  bed  of 
all  the  principal  rivers  crossed  by  Mr.  Krapf  between  Sara- 
godel  and  Antalow  is  plain  from  this  narrative  of  Pearce 
and  the  point  where  he  crossed  the  Tacazze  ;  and  that  their 
junction  takes  place  nearly  in  the  places  or  points  as  placed 
in  the  map  is  obvious,  not  only  from  the  direction  of  their 
currents  where  crossed,  but  from  the  testimony  of  an 
Abyssinian,  who  travelled  from  Antalow  across  the  coun- 
try south-west  to  the  country  near  the  abodes  of  theEdjow 
Gallas.  The  first  river  that  he  came  to  on  the  route  men- 
tioned was  the  Zimmera,t  a  very  considerable  stream,  and 
clearly  the  Tyana  of  Krapf.  It  rises  in  the  province  of 
Wogerat,  and  enters  the  district  of  Boura,  and  then  Salowa. 
Passing  the  village  of  Sakka,  and  crossing  a  mountain,  the 
traveller  came  to  a  river  called  Tsalari,  most  probably  the 
river  Ghebia  of  Krapf,  and  some  of  its  tributaries.  Be- 
yond Sokota  is  Mount  Jala,  the  Sala  of  Pearce,  and  which 
the  Abyssinian  stated  was  as  high  as  Amba  Hai,  and  with 
the  same  kind  of  vegetation  on  its  summit.  Beyond  Mount 
Jala,  or  Sala-ferre,  is  the  village  and  river  of  Gueralia,  a 
tributarv  to  the  Tacazze — then  the  river  Mary,  a  west  side 
tributary.  Beyond  Lalibela,  or  Bobbala,  is  the  village  of  Dan- 
gobat ;  and  beyond  it  a  considerable  river  called  Cutchinaba, 
running  among  high  mountains  and  passing  several  vil- 
lages. Going  southerly,  the  country  of  the  Edjow  Gallas 
is  reached.  The  Cutchinaba  of  the  Abyssinian  is  no  doubt 
*  Salt,  p.  254.  t  Geographical  Bulletin,  Paris  ILMO. 

(I   2 


the  Tchevtz  Chico  of  Krapf,  which  he  states  rises  near  the 
famous  pass  of  that  name,  on  the  confines  of  Lasta  and  Be- 
gemder,  and  pm'suing  a  westerly  course  joins  the  Nile,  be- 
tween Daunt  and  Begemder,  that  is  to  the  south  of  Alata, 
and  is  most  probably  the  same  river  that  bears  the  name  of 
the  Alata  at  its  junction  with  the  Nile.  Bruce,  vol.  iii.  p. 
380,  informs  us  that  the  Agows  of  Lasta  are  called  Tchertz 
Agows,  probably  from  living  about  the  pass  mentioned  ;  and 
at  vol.  v.  p.  509,  we  learn  that  this  pass  was  on  the  frontiers 
of  Waag,  or  not  far  from  these,  perhaps  the  eastern  pass,  as 
there  were  two  of  them.  One  was  on  the  frontier  of  Lasta.* 
The  whole  of  the  countries  under  immediate  considera- 
tion are  extremely  hilly,  but  with  numerous  fertile  valleys, 
the  province  of  Enderta  being  chiefly  low  and  particularly 
fertile.  We  have  thus  before  us  the  celebrated  river 
Tacazze,  the  Astobaras  of  the  ancients,  with  its  numerous 
and  early  tributaries,  delineated  in  a  manner  it  has 
never  hitherto  been  done.  Bruce  pointedly  stated  that 
the  Tacazze  rose  200  miles  south-east  of  Gondar,  that 
its  main  stream  came  from  Angot,  and  its  other  branch 
came  from  the  frontiers  of  Begemder  and  Lasta,  near  Dam- 
buco  and  Lalibala.  At  the  ford  where  he  crossed  it  to 
the  south  of  Sire,  in  Latitude  13°  42'  45"  north,  it  was 
in  the  dry  season  200  yards  broad  and  three  feet  deep. 
We  now  find  its  sources  to  be  w'here  he  had  placed  them, 
and  its  early  course — that  is  the  course  of  the  western 
branch — Pearce  from  actual  observation  tells  us  that  it  is 
"  northwesterly"t  along  the  base  of  the  Samen  range. 
Bruce  also  stated,  and  Pearce  found  this  to  be  the  case,  that 
the  river  before  receiving  the  Angot  branch  the  Arequa, 
or  Tyana  or  Zimmera,  that  it  runs  between  Lasta,  Gualieu, 

*  Bruce,  vol.  iv.  p.  87.  +  Salt,  p.  •184. 


and  Belessen.  Between  Antalow  and  Chelicut,  Salt 
informs  us  there  are  two  small  streams.*  The  pros- 
pect from  Antalow  to  the  south  is  very  fine.  In  a  clear 
day  they  could  see  the  high  mountains  Salowa  and  Boora, 
about  twenty  miles  to  the  south.  Salt  states  that 
"the  river  Arequa  from  the  width  of  its  bed  and  the  body 
of  water  which  it  brings  down,"  is  the  largest  river  be- 
tween the  coast  and  the  Tacazze.f  It  runs  through  the 
fine  country  of  Avergale,  and  joins  the  Tacazze  in  the  dis- 
trict of  Temben.    Waag  is    south  of   Avergale.J 

Nearly  the  w^hole  surface  of  Abyssinia  from  north  to 
south,  and  from  east  to  west,  is  covered  with  vast  moun- 
tains, great  ranges  and  high  hills,  some  of  which  are  of 
very  singular  forms.  From  these  flow  in  all  directions 
numerous  rills,  rivulets,  streams,  and  rivers  ;  many  of  the 
latter  of  considerable  magnitude,  and  nearly  all  of  which 
flow  to  form  the  Bahar-el-Azreck,  or  Blue  River,  or  the  Nile. 
All  the  mountains  are  very  high,  and  several  of  them 
remarkably  so.  The  peak  of  Samen,  called  Amba  Hai,  is 
calculated  to  be  14,000  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea  ; 
but  as  snow  lies  perpetually  on  its  summit,  it  must  be  at 
least  2000  feet  higher  before  the  snow  can  lay  perpetually 
in  that  low  latitude  1 .3"  from  the  Equator.  Taranta  con- 
siderably exceeds  10,000  feet.  The  mountains  in  Lasta, 
Angot,  and  Northern  Shoa,  where  frost,  hail,  and  snow  are 
often  found,  must  be  of  a  comparative  elevation,  and  proba- 
bly exceed  12,000  feet.  Bruce  calculated  the  height  of  the 
fountains  of  the  Nile  at  two  miles  10,340  feet,  and 
Mount  Amid  above  these  half  a  mile  2,585  feet  more  ;  and 
yet  he  adds  that  hail,  but  no  snow,  was  frequently  seen 
on  them.  In  KafFa  the  mountains  rise  above  the  limits  of 
*  Salt,  p.  347.        +  lb.  p.  350.  t  lb.  P-  279,  &c. 


snow,  and  we  have  the  authority  of  Ptolemy  to  state,  that 
the  mountains  around  the  sources  of  the  Bahr-el-Abiad,  al- 
most under  the  Equinoctial,  are  also  covered   with  snow. 
Abyssinia  is  altogether  a  most  extraordinary  country,  and 
has  undergone  many  and  extraordinary  revolutions.     But 
it  has  been  so  well  described  by  Bruce,  and  latterly  by 
other   travellers,  that  it  is    considered  unnecessary  to  go 
into  minute  details  here,  except  to  advert  to  the  mere  geo- 
graphical points  and   positions,  which  it   is  necessary  to 
bring  under  review.     Toward  the  north-west,   only  where 
it  approaches  the  plain  of  Senaar  and  the  junction  of  the 
Tacazze  with  the  Nile,  can  the  country  he  called  flat.  Where 
the  Blue  River  approaches   Fazuclo   it  bursts  through  the 
stupendous  chain  of  mountains  on  either  hand  as  if  it  was 
issuing  through  a  door.     The  scenery  must  be  very  grand. 
There  is  one  cataract  here  280  feet  high,  and  below  it  two 
others,  but  of  a  much  less  height.     From  hence  to  Senaar, 
and  indeed  to  Khartoum,  the  course  of  the  river  is  smooth. 
The  climate  around  Fazuclo  is  most  delicious.     The  present 
Viceroy  of  Egypt  was  there  in  the  summer  of  1839,  and 
he    states,  that  though  then   considerably  above    seventy 
years  of  age,  the  climate  was  so  enlivening  as  to  bring  him 
back  to  the  age  of  twenty  five  !     At  this  place  he  has  built  a 
city,  and  given  it  his  own  name  ;  and  there  can  be  no  doubt 
that  from  its  position  it  will  soon  rise  into  importance.  The 
Shangalla  or  Negro  tribes  have  encroached  greatly  on  Abys- 
sinnia  in  the    west,  north-west,  and  north,  as  the  Gallas 
have  done  on  the  south-west,  south,  and  south-east ;  and 
all  these  tribes  have  carried  ignorance,  idleness,  desolation, 
violence,  misery,  and  poverty  wherever  they  have  come. 

The  village   and  halting-place  of  Halai  on  the  summit 
of  Mount  Taranta  is,   according  to  Ruppell,   situated    in 


14"  59'  37"  North  Latitude,  8093  French  feet  above  the 
level  of  the  sea  ;  and  Takheragera  on  the  frontiers  of  Waag 
and  Salowa  in  13"  39'  22"  North  Latitude.  Salt*  has  a  re- 
markable expression,  namely,  that  on  the  "  eastward  side  of 
the  Tacazze  in  this  Latitude  rises  the  lofty  province  of  Sa- 
men,"  which  would  indicate  that  part  of  Samen  is  on  the 
east  side  of  that  river,  unless  the  word  "  eastward"  has 
been  substituted  for  "  westward."  Samen  is  a  particularly 
mountainous  country  ;  so  is  Belessen,  to  the  north  of  which 
is  Lamalmon,  on  the  summits  of  which  ice  is  found,  which 
gives  this  mountain  a  great  elevation.  Attagerat,  the 
capital  of  Agame,  is  7675  French  feet  above  the  level  of 
the  sea,  and  Takheragera  5955.  The  waters  between 
Halai  and  Attagerat,  and  also  a  little  southward  of  the  latter 
place,  run  to  the  Red  Sea.  The  river  Geba  when  Ruppell 
crossed  it  was  twenty  feet  broad,  and  on  an  average  two 
feet  deep.  The  bed  of  the  Tacazze  he  calculated  to  be 
2812  French  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea.  Entschetgab 
he  places  on  13°  6'  19''  North  Latitude  and  38°  19'  29" 
East  Longitude  from  Greenwich,  and  the  elevation  9,713 
French  feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea. 

Massowa  he  places  in  39"  29'  24"  Longitude  east  of 
Greenwich,  and  Latitude  15°  36'.  Bruce  places  it  on  39" 
36' 30"  east  longitude  and  15°  35' 8",  and  the  position  given 
to  it  by  Bruce  is  probably  nearest  the  truth.  There  is  a 
remarkable  discrepancy  between  Ruppell,  Bruce,  and  Salt 
about  the  rivers  near  Adowa  and  Axum.  The  former  says 
they  run  from  north  to  south,  and  the  latter  two  gentle- 
men, who  also  saw  them,  state  that  they  run  from  south 
to  north.  I  have  followed  Ruppell  in  placing  them  in 
the  Map.     According   to  Salt,  the  coast   of  the  Red  Sea 

•  Salt,  p.  490. 


from  Rachmah  to  Ras  Hassar  lies  flat  and  low,  and  is 
bounded  by  higb  mountains  at  no  great  distance.*  The 
Bay  of  Amphila  extends  sixteen  miles  on  the  coast,  and  is 
about  twelve  miles  deep.  At  the  bottom  of  the  bay  there 
are  two  villages,  Madir  and  Durora;  the  latter  the  largest. 
The  range  of  mountains  are  about  fifteen  miles  distant. 
These  run  north-west  and  south-east,  and  immediately 
beyond  this  is  a  still  loftier  chain,  extending  from  Senafe 
to  Taranta.  Senafe  properly  signifies  boundary,  and  is  some 
times  written  Senaa.  The  road  from  Amphila  Bay  is  nearly 
west,  and  three  days'  journey  brings  the  traveller  to  the 
edge  of  the  Salt  plain,  which  runs  in  a  north-east  to  a 
south-west  direction,  and  is  four  days'  journey  in  length. 
It  takes  five  hours  to  cross  it  at  this  point,  when  the  travel- 
ler comes  to  Durwa,  the  first  village  within  the  territory 
of  the  Ras,  Hence  passing  the  village  of  Dafa,  and  a 
fine  plain,  the  highest  range  of  mountains  is  reached, 
called  here  Senafe,  and  which  is  as  high  as  Taranta.  The 
journey  from  Amphila  is  a  journey  of  nine  days.  The 
road  west  from  Amphila  is  supplied  with  water. 

From  Arkeeko  to  Aylat  in  a  direct  line  is  about  twenty 
miles  west.  Near  this  place  is  the  source  of  a  river, 
which  at  some  distance  west  joins  the  river  springing  near 
Bisan  and  Dobarwa,  and  according  to  Mr.  L'Abadie  f  forms 
the  river  A'nsaba,  which  runs  northerly  to  the  Red  Sea  at 
Taka,  two  days'  journey  to  the  south  of  Souakem.  This 
is  a  new  feature  in  the  geography  of  this  part  of  Africa, 
and  is  extremely  probable.  Burkhardt  states  that  the 
mountains  of  Langay  are  considerably  elevated ;  that  he 
found  streams  and  rivulets   descending  from  them  to  the 

*  Salt,  p.  140.  t  Geographical  Bulletin,  Paris,  Sept.  1842. 


eastward  and  north-eastward  ;  that  the  scenery  was 
very  beautiful,  and  the  cUmate  reminded  him  of  that  on 
Mount  Lebanon.  The  small  district  of  Taka,  three  days' 
journey  in  length,  and  one  day's  journey  in  breadth, 
(other  accounts  say  double)  is  exceedingly  fertile.  It  is 
greatly  and  deeply  flooded  by  the  Mareb  when  swollen  by 
the  rains,  and  hence  its  great  fertility.  The  pass  of  Ta- 
ranta  is  south  by  compass  from  Massowa,  when  the  varia- 
tion was  14°  west,  and  the  highest  part  of  the  mountain 
is  to  the  south  and  east  of  the  pass.  Dixan  is  at  the 
foot  of  the  mountain  on  its  west  side,  and  only  about 
three  geographical  miles  in  a  direct  line  from  Halai.  From 
Halai,  Bruce  could  distinguish  the  sea  to  the  north- 
east. The  descent  to  the  sea  is  exceedingly  precipi- 
tous. From  Dixan  to  Antalow,  Salt  on  his  first  journey 
was  fifteen  days.  The  course  was  to  the  eastward  of 

Shoa  with  some  adjacent  provinces,  now  under  the  con- 
trovd  of  the  independent  Gallas,  formerly  formed  part  of 
the  Abyssinian  empire,  and  in  the  days  of  the  strength  and 
extent  of  that  empire,  the  Sovereigns  thereof  resided  in 
the  southern  parts,  and  for  a  considerable  time  at  Tegulet, 
and  other  residences  in  Southern  Shoa.  But  Shoa  be- 
came independent  of  the  Sovereigns  of  Abyssinia  sub- 
sequent to  the  confusion  which  ensued  after  the  fearful 
desolation  spread  over  that  empire  by  the  Mahomedans 
under  Mahomed  Gragne,  and  the  early  irruptions  of  the 
Gallas,  who  spread  ruin  among  both.  Shoa  was  also 
considerably  straitened  in  its  dominions  by  these  bar- 
barians. Mr.  Krapf  has  pretty  accurately  defined  its 
modern  boundaries  ;  so  much  so,  that  with  the  assistance 
of  the  ]Map,  it  is  considered  unnecessary  to  enlarge  upon 


that  subject  in  this  place.  The  boundaries  and  extent  of 
the  provinces  of  Abyssinia  which  now  belong  to  it,  and 
which  are  best  defined,  are  as  follows  : 

Tigre  in  its  greatest  extent  from  Dobarwa  southward,  is 
about  200  miles  from  north  to  south,  and  120  miles 
from  east  to  west.  Its  eastern  boundary  is  the  high 
land,  which  separates  the  waters  which  flow  east  into  the 
Red  Sea  from  those  which  flow  west  into  the  Tacazze. 
On  the  south  it  is  bounded  by  Angot  and  Lasta,  and  on 
the  west  by  part  of  Begemder,  and  next  by  Samen,  and 
then  by  Sire,  and  on  the  north  by  Shangalla  and  Arab 
tribes.  Amhara  is  120  miles  from  east  to  west,  sixty 
miles  from  north  to  south,  and  is  bounded  on  the  south 
by  Walaka  and  the  Woolla  Galla;  on  the  east  by  Geshen 
or  Yeshen,  and  Lasta  ;  on  the  north  by  Begemder  ;  and  on 
the  west  by  the  Nile.  Begemder  excluding  Lasta  is  1 20 
miles  from  east  to  west,  and  sixty  to  seventy  miles  from 
north  to  south,  bounded  east  by  Lasta  and  part  of  Gualieu, 
south  by  Amhara,  west  by  the  Nile  and  part  of  Lake 
Dembea,  and  north  by  Belessen,  and  a  part  of  Samen. 
Samen  eighty  to  ninety  miles  from  north  to  south,  and 
about  forty  to  fifty  from  east  to  west,  is  bounded  east  by 
Lasta,  Waag,  and  Tigre ;  north  by  Tigre  and  Sire ; 
west  by  Lamalmon  and  Belessen,  and  south  by  part 
of  Lasta  and  Belessen.  Gondar  is  a  province  to  the  north- 
ward, as  Dembea  is  to  the  westward  of  Lake  Tzana  or 
Dembea.  Maitsha  is  a  province  south  of  the  Lake,  ex- 
tending from  the  Nile  on  the  east,  to  the  Nile  on  the 
west,  and  bounded  south  by  Goutto,  the  province  about 
the  sources  of  the  Nile,  and  Gojam  more  to  the  east.  Gojam 
is  bounded  bv  Maitsha,  and  Mount  Amid  Amid  on  the 
north,  by   the   Nile   on  the  east  and   the  south,  and   by 


Daraot  on  the  west.  It  stretches  westward  on  the  Nile 
to  Hades  Amba  and  near  the  passage  that  proceeds 
over  the  Nile  to  Gooderoo.  Damot  is  bounded  east  by 
Gojam,  south  by  the  Nile,  east  by  undefined  Abysinian 
and  Galla  territories,  and  north  by  Goutto.  Bure  is  its 
capital.  In  former  times  Damot  extended  across  the  Nile 
to  the  northern  frontier  of  Enarea,  when  that  province 
formed  part  of  the  Abyssinian  empire.  Westward  of 
Dembea,  is  Kuara,  and  next  to  it,  and  northward,  is 
Ras  el  Feel,  the  boundaries  of  either  of  which  to  the 
westward  and  south-east,  as  well  as  to  the  north, 
cannot  be  accurately  defined. 

Gojam  and  Damot  abound  in  cattle,  and  were  at  one 
time  well  cultivated  and  productive.  The  province  of 
Lasta,  which  once  formed  part  of  Begemder,  is  exceed- 
ingly mountainous,  and  the  cold  thereon  very  great ;  so 
much  so,  that  most  of  the  army  of  the  Abyssinian  King 
FaciUdas,  perished  when  there  by  its  severity,  even  in  the 
month  of  March,  when  he  went  to  attack  the  inhabitants 
who  had  revolted.  He  defeated  them  near  Lebo.  Beles- 
sen  is  throughout  exceedingly  mountainous.  Wechne 
is  about  thirty- five  miles  from  Emfras,  and  is  one  of 
the  state  prisons  appointed  for  the  Royal  Family.  Gafat 
is  not  a  continued  country,  but  a  set  of  scattered  villages. 
Wumburna  or  Umburna  is  one  of  them.  Senasse  is  the 
capital  of  the  Gongas,  and  is  situated  to  the  north  of  the 
Nile  ;  but  the  tribe  inhabit  both  banks.  In  this  district, 
in  the  east,  is  the  passage  of  the  Nile  at  Mine,  (the  word 
means  passage),  on  the  western  route  to  Enarea,  and 
below  it  is  the  famous  cataract  in  the  Nile,  280  feet  high. 
Both  are  in  the  country  of  the  Gongas.  Below  them  on 
both  sides  of  the  Nile   are  the   Nuba.     Amoro  is  to  the 


south  of  the  Nile,  called  also  Amoro  Jidda,  from  a  Galla 
tribe  of  that  name. 

But  quitting  this  portion  of  the  countiy,  it  is  necessary, 
in  elucidation  of  the  Map  and  the  subject,  to  turn  to  the 
south,  in  order  to  make  a  few  remarks  and  observations. 
The  cataract  of  Alata  is  forty  feet  high,  and  at  all  times, 
more  especially  during  the  rainy  season,  it  is  a  magnificent 
sight.  The  Nile,  in  approaching  it,  runs  confined  between 
two  banks,  in  a  deep  trough,  roaring  over  its  bed  with 
impetuous  velocity.  When  Bruce  saw  it,  the  stream 
was  increased  from  the  rains,  and  was  then  half  an  Eng- 
lish mile  in  breadth.  The  river  was  nevertheless  clear. 
No  crocodiles  are  to  be  found  above  the  cataract.  A 
brisk  stream  called  Mariam  Ohha,  runs  to  the  Nile,  a  little 
below  the  village  of  Alata.  This  stream  comes  from 
Begemder,  and  is  the  Tchertz  Chico  of  Krapf,  already 
alluded  to.  A  great  number  of  rivers  join  Lake  Dembea, 
from  the  hilly  regions  in  the  east,  the  north,  and  the 
west.  The  Nile  itself  is  a  considerable  liver  before  it  joins 
the  Lake.  It  has,  on  both  sides,  from  its  sources,  down- 
wards, several  considerable  tributaries,  especially  the 
Jimma  on  the  east,  and  the  Assar  on  the  west.  This 
latter  was  as  large  as  the  Nile,  and  when  Bruce  crossed 
it  in  the  dry  season,  he  found  it  1 70  yards  broad,  and 
two  feet  deep.  The  country  to  the  southward  of  the 
sources  of  the  Nile,  included  in  that  large  circle,  which 
the  river  makes,  is,  exclusive  of  the  very  high  mountains 
with  which  it  is  covered,  very  elevated  land,  and  gives 
birth  to  innumerable  springs  and  rivulets,  which  in  a 
short  sjface  form  considerable  rivers.  The  western  passage 
of  the  Nile  to  Enarea  is  at  a  place  called  Mine,  which  in 
fact  means  passage,  and  it  is  the  opinion  of  the  writer  that 


it  is  not  so  far  west  as  it  has  been  represented  to  be.  He 
grounds  this  opinion  on  the  statement  made  by  Bruce,* 
that  it  is  not  far  from  Hades  Amba,  which  is  in  Gojam. 
Near  this  latter  place  is  the  passage  of  the  Nile,  on  the 
route  by  the  east  side  of  Lake  Dembea  and  Basso  to  Good- 
eroo  and  Enarea.  Both  roads  to  Enarea,  but  especially 
that  from  Mine,  are  mountainous.  The  distance  from  Mine 
to  Enarea,  or  the  capital  Sakka,  is  fifty  leagues,  according 
to  Bruce,  and  due  south ;  the  distance,  thirteen  days 
journey,  viz :  seven  days  to  Gonea,  and  six  from  Gonea 
to  the  capital.  Before  reaching  Gonea,  the  traveller  crosses 
a  very  high  mountain.  The  distance  here  given  is  checked 
bv  the  distance  given  by  the  Gooderoo  route,  from  repeat- 
ed and  quite  different  authorities,  and  both  agree  in  a 
surprising  manner  as  to  the  position  of  the  capital  of 

Immediately  adjoining  the  Nile  on  its  south  bank  is 
the  country  called  Bezamo,  inhabited  by  the  Boren  and 
the  Bestumo  Gallas.  Formerly  the  province  of  Damot  ex- 
tended across  the  Nile  southward  to  the  confines  of 
Enarea ;  but  since  the  conquests  by  the  Galla,  Damot  is 
now  confined  to  the  north  bank  of  the  Nile.  The  pro- 
vince of  Enarea  proper  is  on  all  sides  surrounded  with 
high  mountains,  especially  to  the  south  and  the  west ; 
those  to  the  south  in  Caffa  rising  above  the  limits  of 
snow.  The  province  is  an  elevated  Plateau,  watered  by 
many  considerable  streams,  wet  and  marshy,  but  fertile, 
especially  in  coffee  of  a  superior  quality.  The  river  Zebee 
runs  through  it,  and  is  formed  by  several  large  branches 
rising  to  the  north-west,  particularly  the  Omo  and  the 
Gojob.     The  ridges  and  hills  in  this  quarter  are  evidently 

*  Brute,  vol.  v.  p.  5-t. 


and  generally  calcareous,  and  hence  the  colour  of  the 
Zebee  from  the  sands  it  brings  down,  and  running  over 
white  calcareous  rocks,  which  makes  the  water  resemble 
melted  butter.  The  population  of  Enarea  and  Kaffa  are 
generally  Christian,  but  of  late  years  have  become  intermixed 
with  Mahomedans  and  Pagans.  These  provinces  formed 
the  most  southern  and  western  provinces  of  the  Abyssinian 
Empire  in  the  days  of  its  greatest  strength  ;  and  had,  as 
has  been  stated,  an  intercourse  with  the  coasts  of  the  At- 
lantic, by  means  of  regular  trading  stations  through  the 
interior.  KafFa,  or  CafFa,  lies  south-west  from  Enarea, 
and  beyond  it  is  Limmou,  lately  brought  to  the  knowledge 
of  the  Europeans  by  a  native  of  it  (Bull.  Geo.  Society,  Paris, 
July  1839),  who  was  lately  in  Paris.  In  fact,  it  is  stated, 
and  perhaps  truly  stated,  that  Limmou  is  only  part  of 
Enarea  in  its  most  extended  sense.  Be  this  as  it  may, 
however,  the  fact  is,  that  the  river  Habahia  and  its  early 
tributaries,  which  rise  to  the  westward  of  Kaffa,  run  to 
the  southward,  and,  as  we  shall  see  by  and  by,  most  proba- 
bly form  the  parent  streams  of  the  Bahr-el-Abiad,  al- 
though Ptolemy's  account,  perhaps,  after  all,  that  which 
is  most  to  be  relied  on,  indicates  that  it  is  not  so.  The 
nearest  way  to  Enarea  from  Gojam  is  by  Gooderoo. 
There  is  also  another  route  much  frequented  from  Enarea 
to  Rogie  in  Shoa,  and  thence  to  Ankobar  and  AngoUalla. 
The  road  by  Gooderoo  takes  thirty  days  to  travel  at  the 
rate  of  about  nine  miles  per  day  made  good. 

Limmou  is  wholly  peopled  by  Gallas,  who  are  a  brave 
race  of  men  with  agreeable  countenances.  Their  arms 
are  a  corset  and  crooked  sabre,  a  lance,  &c.,  in  the  forms 
resembling  the  representations  of  those  which  are  found 
in  the  ancient  monuments  of  Egypt  and  Nubia.     This   is 


curious  and  interesting.  To  the  west  and  north-west  of 
the  districts  composing  Limmou  are  the  Shangalla  or  Ne- 
groes, quite  a  different  race  from  the  Gallas.  It  has  already 
been  stated,  that  many  of  the  Gallas  are  of  a  fair  complexion. 
The  Geographical  Bulletin  of  Paris,  1840,  p.  374, 
states  from  information  lately  received  concerning  them, 
that  among  them  are  many  whites  with  agreeable  coun- 
tenances ;  and  that  the  females  are  generally  pretty.  Bruce 
also  states,*  that  nearly  under  the  line  and  south  of  Abys- 
sinian and  black  tribes,  all  the  people  are  white,  as  we,  says 
he,  have  had  an  opportunity  of  seeing  the  Gallas  daily,  whom 
we  have  described.  They  are  partly  Mahomedans,  and 
marry  according  to  Mahomedan  rites.  Their  acquaintance 
with  Mahomedans  probably  first  proceeded  from  the  shores 
of  the  Indian  Ocean.  Native  travellers  state  most  pointedly, 
that  the  river  Gibbie  or  Gebo  flows  north  to  the  Nile ;  that 
it  is  a  large  deep  stream,  full  of  crocodiles ;  that  it  rises 
in  the  mountains  to  the  southward  of  Shoa,  or  in  mountains 
called  Abeze  Gaye,  to  the  north  of  Gingiro,  and  passes 
near  Tchallia,  two  days'  journey  to  the  north  of  the  confines 
of  Narea  or  Enarea.  Others,  however,  state  that  they 
pass  it,  or  a  branch  of  it,  in  the  route  from  Gooderoo  to 
Enarea,  according  as  it  has  been  placed  on  the  ]\lap. 

From  a  very  early  period  of  history,  even  I  believe  as 
early  as  the  days  of  Herodotus,  it  has  been  stated,  that  in 
Africa,  to  the  south  of  Enarea,  and  near  the  equator,  there 
is  a  country  inhabited  by  pigmies,  or  a  diminutive  race  of 
men.  Late  accounts  received  from  the  east  coast  of  Africa 
assert  that  such  a  people  have  actually  been  found  in  nearly 
the  position  mentioned,  and  bordering  on  a  river  most  pro- 
bably the  Quillimancy  or  an  early  tributary.  The  Arab  wri- 
*  Vol.  vi.  p.  400. 


ters  of  the  twelfth  and  thirteenth  century  make  mention 
of  this  race  of  men,  and  state  that  they  inhabited  a  comi- 
try  in  the  part  of  Africa  alluded  to,  and  dwelt  by  a  river 
called  the  river  of  Pigmies,  which  river  they  assert  was 
formed  by  two  rivers  which  rose  on  the  eastern  side  of  the 
mountains  of  the  moon,  (the  Bahr-el-abiad,  rising  on  the 
west  side  of  the  chain)  and  after  considerable  courses  be- 
come united  in  one  under  the  name  of  the  river  of  the 
pigmies.  Though  clothed  in  Arabic  and  oriental  phrase- 
ology, the  account  when  sobered  down  to  geographical 
accuracy,  may  after  all  not  be  far  from  the  truth.  Can 
the  junction  of  the  Quillimancy  with  a  river  rising  to 
the  south  of  Andak  be  the  river  mentioned,  or  rather 
alluded  to  ? 

Every  geographer  who  has  written  on  the  east  coast  of 
Africa,  especially  the  Portuguese,  places  a  large  river  enter- 
ing the  Indian  Ocean,  near  Magadoxo.  Abulfeda,  an  ac- 
curate writer,  particularly  mentions  it,  and  states  that  it 
overflowed  like  the  Nile ;  and  that  it  had  a  long  course 
rising,  according  to  the  Arabian  mode  of  stating  such 
things,  in  the  lake  Kuara  or  Dembea,  the  source  of  the 
Egyptian  Nile.  The  Bombay  Times  of  July  1842, 
announces,  upon  the  authority  of  accounts  received  from 
Captain  Harris,  the  Ambassador  at  Shoa,  that  such  a  river 
does  enter  the  Indian  Ocean  in  latitude  two  degrees  north, 
that  it  goes  by  different  names,  and  among  others  is 
called  the  Bargama,  or  Bahar  Gama,  in  which  we  clearly 
recognize  the  country  of  Bahargama,  or  Bergamo  of  Bruce 
to  the  eastward,  and  southward  of  Gurague,  the  sources  no 
doubt  of  the  great  river  mentioned.  This  river  is  said  to 
be  of  great  magnitude  at  its  mouth,  to  have  a  long  navi- 
gable course  of  several  hundred  miles,  and  to  rise  in  moun- 


tains  to  the  north  of  the  Line.     It  goes  also  by  the  name 
of  Goolob.     This  is  curious  and  important. 

But  not  the  least  important — if  it  may  not  in  reality  be 
stated  to  be  the  most  important — poi-tion  of  modern  discov- 
eries in  Africa  remains  to  be  noticed.  This  is  the  expedi- 
tion directed  by  the  present  enlightened  and  enterprising 
Viceroy  of  Egypt,  at  the  close  of  1839,  to  explore  the 
course  of  the  Bahr-el-abiad,  or  White  River,  long  known  to 
be  the  chief  branch  of  the  Egyptian  Nile.  The  expedition 
started  from  Khartoum  in  December  1839,  soon  after  the 
commencement  of  the  dry  season.  It  consisted  of  three 
or  four  sailing  barques  and  some  small  canoes  or  passage 
boats,  commanded  by  intelligent  officers,  and  accompanied 
by  400  men  from  the  Garrison  of  Senaar,  They  have  ex- 
ecuted their  commission  well.  An  official  abstract  of  their 
voyage  was  in  the  hands  of  the  writer  of  this  Memoir  in  the 
autumn  of  1840,  and  the  whole  official  journal  is  now  before 
him  from  the  Geographical  Bulletin  of  Paris  of  July,  August, 
and  September  of  last  year.  It  is  very  curious,  very  inter- 
ing,  and  very  important.  Every  day's  proceedings  are 
noted  with  care ;  the  breadth,  depth,  and  current  of  the 
river  ;  the  temperature  and  the  names  of  the  tribes  inhab- 
iting the  banks,  and  the  appearance  of  the  country  around 
as  they  proceeded.  Their  chief  object — the  exploration  of 
the  main  stream  to  its  utmost  point — was  steadily  and  only 
kept  in  view,  and  only  one  affluent,  a  large  stream,  was  ex- 
plored to  a  considerable  distance.  Few  other  affluents 
were  noticed  or  attended  to,  and  such  also  might  readily 
and  easily  escape  their  notice,  because  they  scarcely  ever 
went  ashore,  and  when  they  did  so,  went  but  a  short  dis- 
tance ;  and  the  banks  on  both  sides  being  covered  with 
trees,  and  these  not  onlv  down  to,  but  sometimes  even  into 


the  stream,  covered  with  thickets  and  bushes,  the  entrance 
of  affluents,  unless  of  very  great  magnitude,  as  in  the  case 
of  the  one  referred  to,  might  easily  escape  their  notice. 
Throughout  the  whole  voyage,  they  perceived  no  mountains 
or  ranges  in  sight  on  either  side,  and  but  very  few  hills, 
and  these  disjointed  (see  Map)  and  of  no  great  magnitude 
or  importance.  Numerous  lakes  and  ponds  were  found  on 
both  banks  as  they  advanced  upwards  in  the  southern 
bearing  of  the  river,  the  remains  no  doubt  of  the  inunda- 
tion of  the  river  during  the  rains. 

The  distance  that  the  expedition  advanced  on  the  river 
south  from  Khartoum  was,  including  windings,  nearly  1 300 
geographical  mile's,  after  which,  in  latitude  3°  31'  north, 
and  in  longitude  ST  east  of  Greenwich,  the  river  separated 
into  two  branches ;  the  one,  the  smaller,  coming  from  the 
west,  and  the  other,  the  larger,  coming  from  the  east.  In 
small  canoes  a  party  went  up  the  western  branch  for  a  few 
miles,  chiefly  to  ascertain  that  it  continued  a  separate 
stream,  which  having  done,  they  returned,  finding  it  inca- 
pable of  being  navigated  in  their  vessels.  Where  they  left 
it,  the  stream  was  about  sixty  feet  broad,  nine  to  twelve 
feet  deep,  and  current  one  mile  per  hour.  The  eastern 
branch  they  ascended  in  the  barques  to  the  latitude  of  3° 
22'  north,  when  the  water  ebbed  to  three  feet,  though  the 
breadth  was  nearly  1 300  feet,  and  the  current  half  a  mile 
per  hour.  They  could  not  venture  to  proceed  any  further, 
and  accordingly  turned  back,  and  descending  the  stream 
they  again  came  to  the  Bahar  Seboth  or  Red  River,  so 
called  from  the  colour  of  the  water,  which  they  explored 
to  a  distance  of  about  145  miles,  in  a  direct  line,  when 
the  water  ebbing  to  only  three  feet,  they  were  compelled 
to  turn  back,  though  the  breadth  was  still  about  1 100  feet, 


with  a  current  of  half  a  mile  per  hour.  This  river  comes 
from  a  district  called  Mekj-edah.  From  this  point  they 
descended  the  rivers  to  Khartoum,  which  place  they  again 
reached  at  the  end  of  135  days. 

It  is  necessary  to  bear  in  mind  that  the  magnitude  of 
the  river  and  its  branches  here  given,  was  their  magnitude 
in  the  height  and  at  the  very  close  of  the  dry  season.  The 
river,  to  use  the  words  of  the  commander  of  the  expedi- 
tion, "  runs  winding  (serpente)  through  the  plains  of  Sou- 
dan." For  a  considerable  distance  above  Khartoum  (150 
miles)  the  breadth  of  the  river  was  about  one  and  a  half 
mile,  the  depth  from  four  to  five  fathoms,  and  the  cm-rent 
about  half  a  knot  per  hour.  The  breadth  afterward  de- 
creased to  about  half  a  mile,  the  depth  from  twelve  to 
eighteen  feet,  and  the  current  a  knot  to  a  knot  and  a  fifth 
per  hour.  Beyond  lake  Couir  the  depth  gradually  dimin- 
ished, as  also  the  breadth  running  from  one-fifth  to  half  a 
mile,  but  the  current  one  mile  and  a  half  per  hour,  though 
the  dry  season  was  increasing  in  intensity.  Several  con- 
siderable islands  were  found  in  the  river  from  Khartoum 
upwards  to  the  confines  of  Shillook,  especially  one  called 
Habah,  at  the  commencement  of  their  territory  on  the  west 
side.  The  banks  of  the  river  from  Khartoum  upwards  to 
nearly  lake  Couir,  were  generally  low,  which  will  account 
for  the  overflowing  of  the  river,  and  its  wide  extent,  as  is 
reported  during  the  inundation.  Ascending  upwards,  the 
banks  became  more  elevated  ;  but  still  not  so  much  so  as  to 
prevent  them  being  overflowed,  and  hence  the  numbers  of 
lakes  and  ponds  on  either  hand,  which  were  found  remain- 
ing, doubtless  the  remains  of  the  inundation.  The  banks 
of  the  Bahar  Seboth,  or,  as  it  is  called  in  the  Shillook  lan- 
guage, Bahar  Telhj,  are  however  of  considerable  elevation 


as  far  as  explored,  rising,  and  generally  perpendicular,  to 
the  height  of  from  twenty  to  thirty  feet,  which  will  reach 
above  the  height  of  the  inundation,  and  prevent  the  country 
around  from  being  overflowed.  The  whole  country  from 
Khartoum  upwards  is  a  table  land  of  very  considerable 
elevation,  and  the  view  on  all  sides  exceedingly  picturesque 
and  beautiful.  The  numerous  and  considerable  tribes  which 
were  found  on  the  banks  are  particularly  noticed  in  their 
relative  positions  on  the  Map.  Of  these  the  Shillooks,  the 
Denkhahs,  and  the  Kyks  and  Nuviers,  are  the  most  pow- 
erful and  important.  Hippopotami  and  crocodiles  were 
numerous  in  the  stream  ;  and  cattle,  sheep,  goats,  and  asses, 
were  everywhere  numerous  on  either  bank.  The  country 
was  studded  with  fine  trees  as  they  ascended,  and  in  proof 
of  the  elevation  of  the  country  above  the  level  of  the  sea, 
it  may  be  observed,  that  around  the  bifurcation  the  trees 
and  foliage  were  the  trees  and  foliage  of  an  European  cli- 
mate ;  while  to  shield  themselves  from  the  effects  of  the 
cold  during  the  night,  the  inhabitants  sleep  among  warm 
ashes.  The  bed  of  the  river  is  throughout  sand,  and  hence 
the  colour  given  to  the  stream,  especially  when  it  is  in 
flood,  is  white  and  turbid.  The  gulf  or  lake  Couir  must  be 
of  a  considerable  size,  as  they  were  a  day  and  a  half  look- 
ing about  it  without  any  definite  result  or  description. 
Lower  down  there  is  on  the  west  side  a  chain  of  lakes 
which,  from  the  description  of  them,  the  writer  takes  to 
be  the  outlet  of  the  Bahar-el-Nahal,  not  Nahas.  Accord- 
ing to  Linant,  three  rivers  enter  the  Bahr-el-abiad  from 
the  west,  and  in  the  country  of  the  Shillooks.  The  first  is 
the  Ned-el-Nile,  which  passes  near  by  Gebel-el-Deir,  or  the 
mountain  of  the  round,  situated  in  the  country  of  Taggala 
or  Tuclavi.     The  second  is  the  Bahar-el-Adda,  which  rises 


to  the  west  of  Tubeldie,  flows  to  the  south  of  Sheibon,  and 
enters  the  Nile  in  about  12'^  north  latitude.  The  third  is 
the  Baher-el-Nahal,  which  we  recognize  as  the  river  coming 
from  the  country  of  Dar-el-Nahas,  near  the  copper  mines, 
and  which  is  subsequently  joined  by  the  Bahar  Taisha  at 
Tenderne,  in  the  province  of  Cusne,  where  palm  trees  are 
veiy  abundant.  The  Arabs  place  a  river  coming  from  the 
south-west  and  entering  lake  Couir  or  Tume  ;  but  the  name 
is  not  given.  The  tribe  of  Bhours,  near  the  bifurcation 
and  on  the  east  bank,  are  of  a  copper  colour ;  and  in  the 
house  of  their  Chief  Indian  goods  were  found.  To  the 
south  of  the  bifurcation  they  were  told  that  there  was  a 
veiy  high  mountain,  with  an  extreme  and  well-cultivated 
plateau  on  its  summit.  The  diminished  size  of  the  western 
branch  clearly  indicates  that  the  high  land  which  gives  it 
birth  is  at  no  great  distance.  The  population  on  the  banks, 
though  surprised  at  the  sight  of  the  fleet,  as  it  may  be 
called,  ofi'ered  no  resistance  the  moment  the  real  object  of 
the  expedition  was  made  known  to  them.  The  Kyks,  how- 
ever, were  warlike  and  more  suspicious,  and  considering 
that  it  might  form  a  slave  expedition,  assembled  and 
ofi'ered  resistance.  A  few  troops  landed,  and  soon  scattered 
them,  with  the  loss  of  a  few  killed  and  wounded ;  and  after 
this,  all  was  peace  and  submission.  The  chiefs  of  the  ex- 
pedition gave  out  that  they  were  messengers  sent  from 
heaven,  which  the  simple  people  believed,  and  thereafter 
submissively  and  abundantly  supplied  all  their  wants.  Their 
various  tribes  are  frequently  at  war  with  each  other.  These 
quarrels  generally  originate  about  pasturages  and  boun- 

It  is  considered  unnecessary  to  dwell  longer  on  this  im- 
portant expedition  of  discovery,  the  most  important  \n  a 


geographical  point  of  view  that  has  occurred  in  modern 
times.  To  Mahomed  Ali  the  glory  of  this  discovery  is 
due,  the  results  of  which  cannot  fail  to  be  highly  advan- 
tageous to  the  human  race,  especially  to  the  long  neglected 
population  and  country  of  Africa.  But  it  would  be  unjust 
to  pass  over  without  noticing  the  names  of  the  commanders 
of  this  expedition,  who  have  so  faithfully  and  so  well  obeyed 
the  commands  and  executed  the  orders  of  their  sovereign. 
These  are  Captain  Selim,  the  head  officer  ;  Sulieman 
Kachef;  Rustam  Sacolassy ;  Ibrahim  EfFendi ;  Fez  Houl- 
lah  ;  Hiuss-Bachi  ;  Abdorem  Ragoul,  and  Assad  Allah. 
These  men  deserve  well  of  their  country.  They  have  a 
sovereign  who  can  appreciate  their  services,  and  that  won- 
derful man  is  about  to  send  steamers  up  the  river  which 
we  have  described.  It  was  a  wonder  and  an  era  to  see  steam- 
ers crossing  the  Atlantic ;  but  what  will  it  be  to  see  them 
stemming  the  waters  of  the  Nile  almost  to  the  equator, 
and  walking  as  it  were  over  the  mountains  of  the  moon, 
so  liberally  fixed  in  this  portion  of  Africa  by  incredulous 
and  "  conjectural  geographers."  * 

An  inspection  of  the  Map  will  show  the  reader  the  great 
importance  of  the  discovery,  or  rather  rectification  of  the 
geography  of  Africa  in  these  parts,  and  also  show  the 
great  accuracy  with  which  Ptolemy  delineated  its  general 
features.  It  is  true  that  he  carried  the  heads  of  the 
branches  of  the  White  River  eight  degrees  too  far  south ; 

*  Another  voyage  has  been  performed  up  the  White  River  in  1841  and 
1842.  Two  French  Gentlemen  accompanied  this  expedition.  In  their 
notes  and  map  by  M.  Jomard,  they  give  the  remarkable  bend  of  the 
river  in  nearly  the  parallel  of  9  degrees  Latitude.  This  is  not  indicated  in 
the  official  account  of  the  first  voyage,  and  their  notes  are  not  quite  clear 
and  explicit  on  the  subject.  But  nevertheless,  though  I  have  some  doubts 
on  the  subject,  I  have  adopted  their  delineation  of  this  part  of  the  River. 


but  in  this  he  was  doubtless  misled  by  giving,  as  others 
have  done  after  him,  and  yet  do,  too  great  a  distance  to 
days'  journeys,  and  being  without  any  other  mode  of  mea- 
surement or  information  from  the  opposite  side  to  check 
the  reckoning.  But  he  has  preserved  the  relative  distances 
very  accurately.  Thus  he  says,  the  Blue  River,  or  Astapus, 
rises  in  lake  Coloe  or  Dembea,  situated  in  69o  east  longi- 
tude, and  under  the  equator.  The  western  branch  of  the 
White  River,  he  says,  springs  from  a  lake  in  57°  east  lon- 
gitude and  6°  south  latitude  ;  and  the  eastern  from  another 
lake  in  east  longitude  65°,  and  in  south  latitude  7° ;  and 
these  unite  in  south  latitude  2°,  and  east  longitude  62°  the 
(Greek,)  or  60°  Latin  translation  ;  that  is,  in  the  one  case  2° 
to  the  east  of  the  meridian  of  Alexandria,  and  in  the  other 
on  that  meridian.  The  reader  has  only  to  inspect  the  Map 
to  perceive  how  accurately  all  the  relative  positions  as  to 
the  sources  of  the  two  great  branches  of  the  Nile,  and  the 
distances  from  them  and  the  position  of  the  united  stream 
of  the  Bahr-el-abiad  as  regards  its  bearing  from  Egypt,  are 
preserved.  Finding  this  ancient  geographer  so  accu- 
rate in  his  comparative  delineation  as  to  distances,  we  may 
safely  place  reliance  on  his  accounts  regarding  the  surface  of 
the  country  around  the  sources  of  that  river  which  he  con- 
sidered the  real  Nile.  He  states,  that  it  is  very  moun- 
tainous, and  that  these  mountains  were  covered  with 
snow.  Bruce  in  a  great  measure  corroborates  this 
when  he  states  that  the  mountains  of  KafFa  to  the  south  of 
Enarea  are  covered  with  snow.*  That  acute  and  intelligent 
traveller  states  most  pointedly  in  his  notes,  written  in  Af- 
rica and  on  the  banks  of  the  Bahr-el-abiad, 'that  that  stream 
"rose  in  the  country  to  ^/ie^owM  of  Enarea."  The  Habahia, 
*  Bruce,  vol.  vii.  p.  105. 


the  earh'  source  and  course  of  which  we  know,  runs  where 
he  states  the  Bahr-el-abiad  rises.  An  inspection  of  the 
Map  will  show  that  the  Habahia  may  be  the  source  of  the 
Nile.  The  colour  of  the  water  being  white  would  serve  to 
confirm  this  opinion,  as  drawing  its  supplies  from  similar 
calcareous  ridges  ;  as  the  Zebee  of  a  like  colour,  and  from 
the  cause  mentioned,  actually  does.  It  is  left  to  future  dis- 
covery and  to  the  geographical  reader  to  decide  whether 
Bruce  or  Ptolemy  is  most  correct ;  but  hazarding  an  opinion, 
I  would  say  that  both  are  right,  that  the  Habahia  is  one 
branch  of  the  Bahr-el-abiad,  while  Ptolemy  considered 
that  the  branch  rising  furthest  to  the  south  had  the  un- 
doubted claim  to  be  considered  the  parent  stream. 

The  elevation  of  the  bed  of  the  Tacazze,  and  that  of  the 
Abawi  above  the  level  of  the  sea,  have  been  given ;  the 
former  from  Ruppell,  and  the  latter  from  Dr.  Beke  ;* 
but  it  would  appear  that  thev  are  under  some  mistake, 
Bruce  estimated  that  the  sources  of  the  Abawi  were  10,340 
feet  above  the  level  of  the  sea ;  and  if  so  there  are  certainly 
neither  cataracts  nor  rapids  in  the  stream  of  the  Abawi 
from  its  sources  to  the  point  where  Dr.  Beke  first  crossed  it 
to  account  for  7340  feet,  the  difi'erence  of  elevation  in  the 
comparative  short  space  of  250  miles.  Bruce  also  calcu- 
lated that  the  plain   of  Senaar  was  about  5000  feet  above 

*  See  p.  35.  Lake  Dembea,  or  Zana,  is  5732  French  feet  above  the 
level  of  the  sea,  and  Gondar  according  to  Ruppell  1232  French  feet  above 
the  level  of  the  Lake.  The  diflference  of  the  level  of  the  Abawi  near  the 
juuction  of  the  Djirama  and  the  Ford  of  Fiiri  is,  according  to  Dr. 
Beke,  100  feet.  Considering  the  elevation  of  Lake  Zana,  as  given  by 
Ruppell,  the  bed  of  the  Abaw  near  its  junction  with  the  Djimma  must  be 
higher  than  Dr.  Beke  has  made  it ;  while  the  descent  which  the  Nile  has 
from  Lake  Zana  to  Senaar  (cataracts  included)  would  give  an  elevation 
to  the  plain  of  Senaar  to  the  extent  stated  bj'  Bruce. 


the  level  of  the  sea.  In  this  elevation  he  seems  to  be 
borne  out  by  all  but  unerring  guides.  Though  it  was  the 
hottest  period  of  the  year  when  he  was  at  Senaar,  yet  he 
felt  it  cool,  even  when  fully  clothed,  and  could  walkabout  in 
the  sun  without  inconvenience.  This  indicates  a  very  con- 
siderable elevation.  This  is  also  confirmed  by  the  account 
which  Mahoraed  Ali  gives  of  the  climate  of  Fazuclo, 
namely,  that  the  air  was  exceedingly  pure  and  bracing. 
The  elevation  of  Fazuclo  above  Senaar  cannot  be  much, 
because  the  Nile  between  the  one  place  and  the  other  has 
a  placid  and  easy  current.  The  climate  also  which  the 
Egyptian  officers  found  at  the  bifurcation  of  the  Bahar-el- 
Abiad,  coupled  with  the  extreme  gentleness  of  the  cur- 
rent of  that  stream,  all  indicate  a  very  considerable  eleva- 
tion of  every  part  from  the  junction  of  the  Blue  and  the 
White  Rivers  inclusive,  upwards  or  southwards.  Browne's 
meteorological  observations  at  Darfur  shew  us  that  Cobbe, 
the  capital  of  that  country,  must  be  an  elevated  place  ;  for 
during  the  months  of  January  and  February,  the  thermo- 
meter during  the  day  ranged  from  50,^  to  60o,  and  was  at 
times  as  low  as  49°  in  the  middle  of  the  day.  Bruce  was 
also  told  at  Senaar  that  to  the  south  or  south-west  of  Cobbe, 
snow  was  to  be  seen  on  the  mountains.  All  these  facts 
point  out  that  this  interior  part  of  eastern  Africa  must  be 
very  elevated,  and  that  the  Nile  to  the  Mediterranean  must 
have  a  greater  descent  from  Abyssinia  than  the  observations 
of  Dr.  Ruppell  and  Dr.  Beke  would  give  it.  The  bed  of 
the  Tacazze,  at  the  point  in  Samen  where  it  turns  west,  is, 
according  to  Dr.  Ruppell,  2812  French  feet  above  the  level 
of  the  sea.  From  that  point  to  its  junction  with  the  Nile, 
200  miles  below  Khartoum — the  latter  place  150  below 
Senaar — is  about    500   miles,   and    without  either    rapids 



cataracts,  or  any  very  rapid  current.  The  elevation  of  the 
Abawi,  where  Dr.  Beke  crossed  it,  is,  he  states,  in  round 
numbers  3000  English  feet.  From  that  point  to  Senaar 
is  fully  400  miles,  in  which  space  the  river  has  at  least  400 
feet  of  cataracts,  with  a  considerable  velocity  in  the  current. 
From  Senaar  to  Khartoum  is  150  miles,  and  from  Khartoum 
to  the  junction  with  the  Tacazze  about  200  miles  more,  in 
all  750  miles.  From  these  facts  alone,  it  is  clear  that  either 
Dr.  Beke  or  Dr.  Ruppel  are  wrong  in  their  calculations. 
The  difference  between  them,  as  applied  to  the  elevation  of 
the  bed  of  the  Nile,  cannot  be  less  than  2500  feet. 

The  correction  of  the  geography  of  the  course  of  the 
Bahr-el-Abiad  places  before  us  other  results  equally  im- 
portant. It  discloses  to  our  view  the  course  and  the 
sources  of  the  great  river  Zaire  or  Congo,  with  something 
like  an  adequate  space  for  the  formation  of  a  river  of  that 
great  magnitude  which  the  Zaire  is  known  to  be  ;  and  it  en- 
ables us  to  apply  with  accuracy  the  accounts  which  have 
been  received  with  regard  to  the  country  called  Donga,  and 
the  river  or  rivers  of  Bahr  Kulla,  and  the  Vallis  Garaman- 
tica  of  Ptolemy,  which  have  hitherto  been  so  strangely  per- 
vei"ted  and  attempted  to  be  applied  in  a  manner  which 
shewed  plainly  that  the  application  was  incorrect. 

Darfur,  or  rather  the  capital  thereof,  Cobbe,  is,  accor- 
ding to  Browne,  in  I4o  10'  north  latitude,  and  28°  8' 
east  longitude.  It  is  an  elevated  country.  To  the  south 
it  is  very  fertile,  and  called  Said,  like  the  productive  southern 
provinces  of  Egypt,  To  the  south-west  and  west  the 
country  becomes  very  mountainous  ;  and  from  no  important 
rivers  being  found  among  them,  we  collect  that  the  ele- 
vation is  above  the  level  from  whence  the  springs  which 
form  rivers  usually  flow.    Beyond  Dar  Ruma  west,  however, 


as  the   country  descends  to  the    kingdom  of  Dar  Saley, 
rivers  become  numerous,  and  so  also  to  the  south  and  south- 
west in  the  latter  direction,  as   Donga  and  Dar  Kulla  are 
approached.      The   distance  to  Donga  and  Bahr  Kulla  from 
Cobbe  is  stated  to  be  from  40  to  60   days'  journey,  in  a 
bearing  south-west,  or  about  south-west  by  south.     Donga 
is  20  days'  journey,  about  east- south- east  from  the  southern 
extremity  of  the  empire  of  Bornou,  and  ten  days'  journey 
from  Abou  Telfain    on   the  southern  frontier  of  the  king- 
dom of   Dar   Saley  or  Wara.      This  place  is  about   120 
miles  south- south-west   of  Abou  Shareb,    which  is   again 
five  days'  journey  from  Wara.     Donga  is  also  stated  to 
be  thirty  days'*   (one  account.  Major  Rennells,  says  forty 
days')  journey  from  Shillook  or  Shilluck,  that  is  the  pas- 
sage of  the  Bahr-el-abiad,  El  Aice,  at  the  boundary  of  the 
Shillook,  according  as  the    boundary  of  that  people  stood 
about  fifty  years  ago.     Dar-el-Nahas  at  the  copper  mines 
was  twenty-two  and  a  half  days'  journey  south,  one  quar- 
ter west  from  Cobbe,  exactly  as  laid  down  in  the  Map ;  the 
journey  made  good  being  estimated  at  the  rate  of  twelve 
geographical  miles  per  day.     These  facts   considered    we 
have  the  true  position  of  Donga  and  the  sources,  not  of 
the  Bahar-el-Abiad,  but  of  the  great  river  Zaire,  or  Congo, 
which  it  thus  appears  is  the   river    Bahar  Kulla  running 
south-west.      The  former  country  Donga  gives  us  also  the 
Vallis  Ga7-amantica,  or  great    "dale  or    valley"  so    promi- 
nently mentioned  by  Ptolemy.    It  must  have  been  a  verv  re- 
markable valley,  or  dale,  or  low  country,  to  make  him  take 
such  prominent  notice  of  it,  and  here  we  find  it  in  the  very 
position,   especially   as  to  latitude,  in  which   he  places  it. 
Kulla,  or  KoUa,  we  now  know  accurately  designates  a  low 
*  Browne,  p.  473. 
e  2 


country  in  contradistinction  to  high  lands,  and  the  river 
Bahar  Kulla  means  only  the  great  river  which  traverses 
that  low  country. 

Now  let  us  for  a  moment  attend  to  the  accounts  which 
we  have  of  this  portion  of  Africa,  as  they  have  been  derived 
from  two  quarters  opposite  to  each  other,  the  north  and  the 
south,  and  wholly  unconnected.  "  The  country  of  Dar 
Kulla,"  says  Browne,  p.  449,  "  is  for  a  great  part  of  the  year 
wet  and  marshy,  the  heat  is  excessive,  and  the  people 
remark  that  there  is  no  summer" — that  is,  no  regular  dry 
season.  This  alone  indicates  its  position  to  be  near  the 
Equator.  Its  people  are  partly  negroes,  and  partly  of  a 
copper  colour.  They  have  many  considerable  rivers  which 
are  never  dry,  and  which  they  cross  in  canoes,  made 
from  large  trees  cut  down  and  hollowed  out.  *  The 
expression  "  never  dry,"  as  stated  by  Burckhardt,  is  a 
strong  Arabic  mode  of  designating  a  fertile  country 
abounding  in  water,  and  having  large  rivers.  The  road  to 
Donga  from  Cobbe  is,  says  Browne,  p.  473,  very  mountain- 
ous, and  the  river  in  it  rises  from  forty  distinct  hills ;  a 
common  African  mode  of  expressing  a  great  number  of 
springs  and  tributaries.  It  is  ten  days' journey  south  from 
Abou  Telfain  on  the  frontier  of  Bergoo,  or  Dar  Saley.  Burck- 
hardt received  accounts  exactly  similar.  The  route  to  Don- 
ga and  Dar  Kulla  is  by  the  sources  of  the  Misselad,  or  river 
Gir,  found  in  the  very  district  where  Ptolemy  had  placed  it. 

Next  to  these,  let  us  attend  to  the  accounts  which 
on  the  south  side  have  been  glanced  at  with  regard  to 
this  country.  First,  all  the  Portuguese  early  accounts  and 
maps  represent  the  Congo  and  the  chief  branch  of  the 
Nile  as  flowing  from  the  same  districts  in  Central  Africa. 

*  Browne,  p.  308. 


Secondly,  Tackey  tells  us  that  the  Congo  was  reported  to 
issue  in  several  streams  from  a  large  lake  of  mud,  which 
lake  was  from  the  distance  given  nearly  under  the  Equator  ; 
in  other  words,  that  the  Congo  came  from  a  country  wet 
and  marshy,  and  that  it  was  formed  by  many  streams  in 
its  early  course,  for  this  is  the  correct  account  when  strip- 
ped of  its  African  phraseology.  Thirdly,  he  met  near  the 
cataracts,  and  liberated,  a  Mandingo  man  slave,  who  said 
that  he  came  from  a  country  to  the  north-east,  called 
M'Intola,  situated  upon  a  river  nearly  as  large  as  the  Zaire  ; 
and  that  he  had  been  three  moons  on  his  journey,  travelling 
sometimes  bv  land  and  sometimes  bv  water  in  comina- 
from  it.  Mandingo  is  well  known  to  be  round  the  sources 
of  the  Niger,  and  at  an  immense  distance  from  this  portion 
of  Africa.  The  pronunciation  of  the  name  of  the  country 
from  which  the  man  came,  M'Intola,  shews  that  Tuckev 
mistook  the  other  word,  and  that  it  should  have  been 
pronounced  M'Jndonga.  In  this.  Donga  is  readily  recog- 
nised, the  road  to  it,  the  river  that  flows  in  it,  and  that 
M'Intola  is  a  district  in  it.  Other  men  told  Tuckey  that 
they  had  been  to  a  distance  of  thirty  days'  journey  north- 
east ;  that  there  the  country  was  very  mountainous  ;  that 
in  their  road  they  crossed  many  rivers,  some  in  canoes, 
and  others  at  fords.  Fourthly,  and  what  is  more  to  the 
point,  the  river  began  to  rise  immediately  above  the  cata- 
racts on  the  first  of  September.  Now  about  the  tenth  of 
August  the  sun  would  have  about  15°  north  declination, 
or  four  degrees  from  the  northern  limits  of  Donga,  at 
which  time  the  rain  would  commence  to  the  southward  of 
the  mountains  on  the  frontier  of  that  country.  After  ten 
days,  and  as  the  sun  became  vertical  about  the  twenty-fifth 
of  August,  the   streams    in  the    upper    and   nearly     mid- 


die  course  would  be  greatly  moved  ;  and  from  that  period 
they  would  all  be  flooded  deeply,  and  the  water  would  de- 
scend rapidly  to  the  south.  Allowing  for  the  turnings 
and  windings  of  the  river,  and  considering  the  distance 
which  the  water  had  to  run  from  the  point,  completely  sub- 
jected to  the  inundation,  a  distance  of  about  500  miles  is 
made  out  ;  and  allowing  at  the  rate  of  fifty-four  miles  per 
day  for  the  progress  of  the  stream  southward,  the  rise  of 
the  Congo  would  just  take  place  on  the  first  of  September 
at  the  point  where  Tuckey  first  perceived  it.  At  first  the  rise 
of  the  river  would  necessarily  be  slow  and  gradual,  but  after- 
ward it  would  be  more  rapid  as  Tuckey  saw  it ;  for  at  tall- 
tree  point  he  found  it  had  in  the  short  space  of  sixteen  days 
risen  seven  feet,  a  proof  that  it  did  not  descend  from  a  lake, 
otherwise  the  rise  could  not  have  been  so  quick.  It  would, 
it  is  considered,  be  superfluous  to  say  more  to  establish  the 
point.  The  magnitude  of  the  river  where  Tuckey  turned 
back,  280  miles  from  its  mouth,  the  breadth  of  the  stream 
from  three  to  four  miles,  its  great  depth  (many  fathoms),  and 
a  current  fully  three  miles  an  hour  at  the  very  commence- 
ment of  the  inundation,  and  the  time  of  the  commencement 
of  that  inundation,  establish  from  invincible  data,  that  the 
Zaire  or  Congo  descends  from  a  high  northern  latitude, 
and  that  the  rivers  in  Donga  and  Dar  Kulla  must  form  its 
early  stream. 

The  reader  who  wishes  further  information  regarding  the 
parts  of  Africa  adjacent  to  those  which  have  been  here 
described  and  of  Africa  beyond  the  limits  of  the  present 
Maps,  may  consult  for  that  purpose  my  Geographical  Sur- 
vey of  Africa,  and  general  map  of  Africa  :  the  latter  pubhsh- 
ed  by  Mr.  Arrowsmith  in  1840. 

With  a  few  general  remarks,  we  shall   conclude   these 


observations.  The  character  of  the  modern  Abyssinians 
appears,  frona  the  accounts  which  reach  us,  to  be  a  strange 
compound  of  meekness  and  ferocity,  devotion  and  bar- 
barity, such  as  is  rarely  to  be  found  among  men.  Thus 
when  engaged  in  war,  they  will  never  fight  on  the  Sab- 
bath, and  always  have  solemn  religious  service  and  ordi- 
nances administered  by  the  Priests  before  beginning  a 
battle.  They  are  regular  and  devout  in  their  private  fami- 
lies and  devotions.  Of  this.  Salt  gives  several,  but  es- 
pecially the  following  interesting  specimen,  which  took 
place  in  the  house  of  the  Governor  of  Dixan,  on  his  arrival 
at  that  place.  "At  the  break  of  day,"  says  he,  "the 
well  known  sound  of  the  Baharnegash's  voice  calling  his 
familv  to  praver,  excited  my  attention,  when  I  immediately 
ran  and  joined  his  pai'ty.  At  this  moment,  the  interval 
of  four  years,  which  had  elapsed  since  my  former  visit, 
appeared  like  a  dream.  The  prayers  which  he  recited 
consisted  of  the  same  words,  were  pronounced  in  the 
same  tone,  and  were  offered  up  with  the  same  fervour  of 
devotion,  which  I  had  before  so  often  listened  to  with 
dehght ;  and  when  the  ceremony  was  concluded,  the  good 
old  man  delivered  out  his  orders  for  the  day,  with  a  patri- 
archal simplicity  and  dignity  of  manner,  that  was  really 
affecting  to  contemplate."*  All  this  is  very  pleasing  ;  but 
on  the  other  hand,  when  we  consider  some  of  their  punish- 
ments, and  these  exercised  upon  captive  enemies,  such 
as  mutilating  their  dead  bodies,  in  a  manner  that  delicacy 
forbids  us  to  describe,  and  flaying  them  alive,  and  then 
stuffing  the  skins,  which  operation  they  call  making  a 
bottle,  we  are  lost  in  wonder  at  the  inconsistency  and 
debasement  of  human  nature.  The  Gallas  are  equally 
*  Salt.  p.  2.10. 


cruel,  and  more  generally  so.  In  war  they  massacre 
alike  the  resisting  and  the  unresisting,  young  and  old,  male 
and  female,  ripping  up  the  latter  who  are  with  child,  an 
Asiatic  custom,  which,  with  other  Asiatic  customs,  would 
lead  us  to  believe  that  their  ancestors  came  originally  from 

Abyssinia  must  have  undergone  many,  and  strange,  and 
distressing  vicissitudes  of  fortune.  At  a  very  early  period 
of  history  it  was  a  powerful  and  enlightened  empire. 
We  find  one  of  its  Queens  placing  herself  in  power  and 
knowledge  as  an  equal  to  Solomon.  It  was  most  cer- 
tainly a  Queen  of  that  country  which  visited  Jeru-salem 
during  the  reign  of  that  Prince.  Our  Saviour  calls  her  by 
way  of  eminence,  the  Queen  of  the  South.  He  who  made 
the  world,  must  know  correctly  the  position  of  every  part 
of  it ;  and  it  may  be  remarked,  that  the  centre  of  Abyssinia 
is  due  south  from  Jerusalem.  Subsequent  to  that  period 
the  Abyssinians  had  conquered  a  great  part  of  Arabia.  At 
an  early  period  they  were  converted  to  the  Christian  faith, 
which  they  have  continued  to  hold  ever  since,  under  the 
most  trying  and  disadvantageous  circumstances.  They 
commanded  the  Red  Sea,  and  with  it  the  trade  between 
Eastern  Africa  and  the  East  Indies  ;  with  Egypt,  Asia 
Minor,  and  Europe,  around  the  shores  of  the  Mediterra- 
nean. This  commerce  was  chiefly  carried  on  by  the  port  of 
Zeilah,  but  more  especially  by  the  port  of  Assab,  within 
the  Straits  of  Babelmandeb,  at  which  place  the  ruins  of 
large  buildings  are  yet  to  be  found.  From  this  port  the 
road  into  Abyssinia  was  direct  by  Manadelli,  which  Alvaraez 
still  found  in  his  day  a  great  rendezvous  for  merchants 
from  the  quarters  mentioned.  On  the  rise  of  the  Mahom- 
edan  power  in  Arabia,  Assab  was  wrested  from  Abyssinia, 


and  from  that  period  her  power  began  to  dechne  ;  but  the 
impenetrable  nature  of  her  country  rendered  her  long  safe 
from  any  serious  and  overwhelming  attack  from  that  rest- 
less and  fanatic  people.  How  far  Christianity  penetrat- 
ed into  Africa  during  the  height  of  Abyssinian  power,  it  is 
difficult  to  say  ;  but  we  are  certain  it  was  to  a  great  ex- 
tent ;  for  the  remains  of  it,  and  that  too  in  considerable 
strength,  are  to  this  day  found  in  Enarea,  Kaffa,  and 
places  adjacent.  The  rise  and  progress  of  Mahomedan 
power,  while  it  gradually  circumscribed  the  dominion  of 
Abyssinia  in  the  south,  the  east,  and  the  north,  cut  her 
off  at  the  same  time,  during  a  period  of  many  centuries, 
from  the  rest  of  the  Christian  world.  Still,  as  late  as  the 
thirteenth  century,  we  find  the  Christian  Kings  of  Nubia 
contending  and  negociating  with  the  proudest  Mahome- 
dan Sovereigns,  till  at  last  they  were  finally  and  complete- 
ly overthrown,  and  Christianity  extinguished  in  Nubia,  the 
wretched  inhabitants  flying  south  to  Abyssinia,  and  into 
the  deepest  recesses  of  the  African  continent ;  in  which, 
however,  they  were  not  long  hidden  from  their  restless 
enemies,  who  followed,  found  them  out,  and  conquered 
them.  The  ruins  of  Gambarou,  on  the  Yeou,  are  well 
known  to  be  the  remains  of  a  city  of  considerable  impor- 
tance, formerly  belonging  to  Christians,  till  it  was  ruined 
and  laid  desolate  by  the  Fallatah  ;  and  to  this  day  there 
are  in  Goober  the  offspring  of  Copts  expatriated  from 
Egypt,  in  order  to  escape  the  ferocity  and  intolerance  of 
the  early  Arabian  conquerors.  These  people  are  very  fair, 
as  much  so  as  the  ancient  Egyptians. 

That  the  power  and  name  of  Abyssinia  penetrated  dec'i) 
into,  and  spread  widely  over  Africa,  is  a  fact  that  cannot  be 
doubted.     It  was  known  according  to  the  earlv  Portuguese 


navigators  at  Benin,  then  a  powerful  kingdom.  This  fact 
has  been  denied,  but  without  any  just  reason,  and  with- 
out reflecting  that  the  name  of  Abyssinia  is  at  this  day 
known  even  to  Timbuctoo,  Sego,  and  the  sources  of  the 
Niger ;  pilgrims  from  all  these  places  in  their  route  hence 
to  Mecca  passing  by  Senaar,  and  the  northern  boundary 
of  Abyssinia,  on  their  way  to  Souakim. 

In  their  wars  with  the  Mahomedans  the  Abyssinians 
in  the  decline  of  their  power,  like  the  Romans  when  in  a 
similar  state,  engaged  auxiliaries  among  their  barbarous 
neighbours  to  aid  in  these  wars.  The  Abyssinian  auxilia- 
ries on  this  occasion  were  the  Gallas.  These  soon  saw  the 
weakness  of  both  the  Abyssinian  and  Mahomedan  power 
in  the  eastern  portion  of  Africa,  and  made  their  country- 
men acquainted  with  it.  The  consequence  was  a  general 
movement  of  that  people  against  both.  They  first  attacked 
Abyssinia  about  the  year  1559,  immediately  after  her 
bloody  and  fatal  wars  with  the  Mahomedans  under  Ma- 
homed Gragne.  They  bore  down  all  opposition  ;  swarm 
after  swarm  was  cut  off  in  the  fearful  and  easily  defended 
defiles  of  Abyssinia;  but  swarm  succeeding  swarm  ad- 
vanced from  the  interior,  and  at  length  finally  and  firmly 
established  themselves  in  the  country,  and  conquered  and 
kept  possession  of  several  of  the  finest  provinces  of  the 
empire,  subduing  at  the  same  time  the  Mahomedans'  on 
the  coasts  of  the  Indian  Ocean,  or  limiting  their  dominions 
in  a  few  places  to  narrow  slips  on  the  sea  coast.  These 
tribes  of  Gallas  came  from  a  country  in  the  interior  of  Af- 
rica, somewhere  about  the  fifth  to  the  tenth  degree  of  south 
latitude,  in  which  part  of  Africa  all  early  writers  agree 
that  the  population  are  not  negroes,  but  comparatively  fair, 
as  we  find  the  genuine  Gallas  really  are.     What  mighty 


movement  of  some  other  savage  nation  in  Africa  caused 
the  general  movement  of  the  Gallas  to  the  north-east,  we 
know  not ;  but  as  in  Asia  and  in  Europe  in  the  early  cen- 
turies of  the  Christian  era,  so  in  Africa  it  was  probablv 
the  attack  of  some  other  whole  nation  of  barbarians  on  the 
Gallas,  that  drove  these  people  as  a  whole  and  in  resistless 
force  against  the  comparatively  civilized,  indeed  we  mav 
say,  the  civilized  empire  of  Abyssinia. 

When  the  christianized  Roman  empire  became  corrupted 
and  debased,  when  they  forsook Uhe  God  which  made  them, 
and  lightly  esteemed  the  Rock  of  their  salvation,  the 
weapons  of  His  indignation  for  severe  and  just  chastise- 
ment were  at  hand  in  the  barbarous  nations  around,  and  in 
the  vicinity  of  that  empire.  Commissioned  by  the  Al- 
mighty, they  were  impelled  against  the  Roman,  then  the 
civilized  world,  with  a  fearful  and  irresistible  impetuosity  ; 
nation  succeeding  nation,  people  more  barbarous  than  a  pre- 
ceding people,  in  the  strong  metaphorical  language  of  Scrip- 
ture, with  the  fierceness  and  violence  of  a  great  moun- 
tain burning  loith  fire  cast  into  the  sea,  bearing  before 
them  degradation,  misery  and  desolation,  lamentations,  and 
mourning,  and  woe,  with  general  darkness  and  ignorance 
in  their  train.  But  civilization  and  Christianity  had  been 
planted  and  rooted,  and  could  not  be  eradicated  ;  the  fierce 
conqueror  yielded  obedience  to  the  laws  of  the  Redeemer, 
and  Christianity  rose  from  this  scene  of  ruin  brighter  and 
stronger  than  ever.  As  in  Europe,  so  will  it  be  in  Asia 
and  in  Africa.  In  the  latter  country,  when  Christian  Aby- 
sinia  had  utterly  corrupted  herself — when  she  too  forsook 
the  God  that  made  her,  and  lightly  esteemed  the  Rock  of 
her  salvation,  then  the  weapons  of  His  indignation  in  the 
nation  of  the  barbarous  Gallas  were  at  hand  to  punish  and 


to  chastise  her.  They  were  impelled  against  the  corrupted 
empire  with  fearful  and  irresistible  force,  and  there  is  only 
wanting  the  pen  of  the  continuous  and  accurate  historian 
to  delineate  to  us  fully  the  havoc  and  ruin,  the  deplorable 
scenes  of  misery  and  ruin,  lamentations ,  and  mourning,  and 
woe,  which  the  march  and  the  conquests  of  these  barba- 
rians brought  upon  the  Abyssinian  empire.  But  as  in 
Europe  so  in  Abyssinia,  Christianity  with  civilization  hav- 
ing been  planted  could  not  be  eradicated.  The  former  still 
rears  its  head ;  many  of  its  conquerors  ;  bent  their  necks 
and  their  minds  to  its  sway  and  its  precepts  ;  and  as  their 
power,  and  also  the  power  of  the  early  and  fanatic  Mahom- 
edan,  is  completely  broken  and  exhausted  in  this  portion 
of  Africa,  so  Christianity  and  civilization  will  yet  rear  their 
heads  and  flourish,  and  spread  in  triumph  over  a  wider 
range  than  ever  they  had  before  done  in  Africa,  and  until 
the  name  and  the  praise  of  the  Redeemer  are  heard  in 
every  country,  on  every  mountain,  in  every  valley,  and 
by  every  stream  in  Africa — the  Nile  and  the  Niger,  the 
Zaire  and  the  Zambezi,  being  made  as  well  acquainted  with 
the  name  of  the  true  God  and  the  Saviour,  as  the  banks  of 
the  Jordan,  the  Thames,  the  Rhine,  the  Danube,  and  the  Po. 
The  moment  to  commence  and  to  accelerate  this  great 
work  as  regards  Africa  is  the  present  hour.  Every  thing 
is  auspicious  and  encouraging  to  undertake  and  to  go  on 
with  the  work.  The  strength  and  power  and  energy  of 
both  Mahomedanism  and  Paganism  in  Africa,  especially 
in  those  parts  of  it  more  immediately  under  consideration, 
are  broken  and  exhausted,  and  can  no  longer  venture,  even 
if  they  had  the  will,  as  formerly,  to  trample  upon  Christian 
power  or  Christian  messengers.  The  road  is  comparatively 
open,  and  the  field  is  comparatively  clear  ;  the   cause  is 


noble,  the  prize  to  be  obtained  honourable  and  great.  The 
best  interests  of  the  human  race,  to  a  very  great  extent,  is 
dependent  upon  African  improvement  and  civiHzation. 
The  interests  of  Great  Britain  in  a  more  especial  manner, 
both  commercial,  colonial,  and  political,  are  interwoven 
with,  and  dependent  upon,  the  improvement  and  prosperity 
of  Africa,  to  an  extent,  in  fact,  almost  incredible,  and  such 
as  few  can  believe  who  have  not  deeply  considered  the  mat- 
ter, but  which  it  is  impossible  to  enter  upon  here.  Look 
what  the  present  Viceroy  of  Egypt  has  done  !  When 
threatened  by  all  Europe  in  1839,  and  when  they  were 
about  to  put  their  threats  into  execution,  he,  on  the  plains 
of  Fazuclo  ordered  that  expedition,  the  surprising  results 
of  which  have  been  previously  considered,  and  while  he 
was  contending  against  all  Europe,  the  officers  to  which  he 
had  intrusted  the  execution  of  the  work,  went  and  accom- 
plished the  noble  object,  the  exploration  of  by  far  the 
greater  portion  of  the  long-hidden  Bahr-el-abiad.  On  the 
plains  of  Fazuclo  also  he  erected  a  city,  named  after  himself, 
and  which  will  rapidly  rise  into  importance.  Khartoum, 
which  only  a  few  years  ago  was  composed  of  a  few  miser- 
able straw  huts,  is  now  a  considerable  city,  well  laid  out,  and 
supplied  and  inhabited  by  different  races  of  men,  among 
whom  are  many  Christians.  When  Mahomed  was  there 
in  July  1839,  these  Christians  came  to  solicit  him  to  give 
them  a  piece  of  ground  on  which  they  might  erect  a  church. 
"You  shall  not  only  have  the  ground  you  want,"  said  Maho- 
med, "  but  I  will  assist  you  with  the  funds  you  may  require 
to  build  and  to  complete  it."  This  is  noble — this  opens  up 
the  dawn  of  a  bright  day  to  Africa,  if  judiciously  attended 
to,  and  pcrseveringly  looked  after.  But  this  is  not  all.  When 
at  Fazuclo  he  put  an  end  to  the  Slave  Trade  in  all  his  do- 


minions  in  that  quarter  of  Africa,  and  counselled  and  ad- 
vised the  native  princes  around  his  provinces  to  do  the 
same,  and  to  turn  their  attention  to  cultivate  the  soil,  and 
sell  its  products  instead  of  selling  men.  They  listened  to 
his  counsels  with  attention,  and  promised  that  they  would 
follow  them  out ;  and  he  is  a  man  who  will  not  forget  to 
make  them  keep  their  word. 

What  Mahomed  Ali  has  done  and  does,  cannot  Eng- 
land also  perform  ?  Most  assuredly  she  can,  if  she  will ;  and  it 
is  as  much  her  interest  as  it  is  the  interest  of  Mahomed 
Ali,  not  only  to  see  Africa  improved  and  cultivated  and 
civilized,  but  further,  that  she  should  have  a  most  active 
and  immediate  hand  in  the  work.  A  few  more  men  with 
the  energy  and  judgment  of  Mahomed  Ali,  and  a  few  more 
judicious,  patient,  and  humble  and  pious  Christian  teach- 
ers like  Messrs.  Isenberg  and  Krapf  in  Africa,  would 
do  more  to  civilize,  enlighten,  Christianize,  and  improve 
her,  than  navies  stationed  round  her  coasts,  or  rude  com- 
merce, such  as  the  palm  oil  trade,  could  do  in  thousands  of 
years.  Can  England  not  find  such,  and  also  the  means  to 
assist  and  to  support  them  ?  * 

*  The  French  have  lately  purchased  two  stations  in  the  Bay  of  Am- 
phila,  at  Ayth  or  Edd,  and  another  place.  The  British  in  1840,  ob- 
tained a  settlement  on  two  of  the  islands  in  the  Bay  of  Tajoura.  Both 
nations,  it  wo'old  thus  appear,  are  directing  their  ^•iews  to  Ab«sinia. 


After  the  preceding  pages  were  written  and  in  the  hands 
of  the  printer,  further  accounts  were  received  from  Dr. 
Beke.  He  was  at  Yaush  on  the  25th  of  November,  1842. 
He  had  explored  the  whole  provinces  of  Gojam  and  the 
countiy  to  the  neighbourhood  of  the  cataract  of  Alata,  and 
also  the  provinces  of  Damot  and  Agowmedre  and  places 
around  the  sources  of  the  Blue  Nile.  The  province  of  Gojam 
is  a  pastoral  country,  consisting  of  elevated  plains  and  very 
high  mountains,  without  trees;  and  intersected  bv  numerous 
small  streams.  The  ridges  of  mountains  to  the  east  and 
the  south-east  of  Geesh  rise  into  the  regions  of  frost  and 
snow.  On  the  4th  of  June  a  very  violent  storm  of  hail 
was  felt  at  Amwatta.  The  hailstones  were  very  large. 
Several  people  and  many  cattle  were  killed  by  them.  The 
hail  lay  on  the  ground  for  three  days  before  it  was  melted 
by  the  heat  of  the  sun,  a  proof  that  the  country  is  greatly 
elevated.  Damot  is  both  a  pastoral  and  an  agricultural 
country,  with  extensive  forests  and  numerous  small  rivers. 
Agowmedre  to  the  westward,  south-west,  and  north-west 
of  the  sources  of  the  Nile,  is  very  mountainous,  the  hills 
generally  volcanic,  but  the  soil  in  many  places  fertile. 
The  Abawi,  or  Blue  Nile,  at  the  ford  of  Furi  is  from  seventy 
to  eighty  yards  broad,  five  feet  deep,  and  the  current  from 
two  to  three  miles  per  hour.     Dr.   Beke  pointedly  states 


that  the  people  dweUing  to  the  south-west  of  KafFa  trade 
with  the  west  coast  of  Africa,  and  that  one  of  their  arti- 
cles of  commerce  is  salt.  His  journeys  confirm  in  the 
most  striking  manner  the  accuracy  of  the  accounts  which 
Bruce  had  obtained  regarding  the  countries  and  rivers  to 
the  south,  to  the  east,  and  to  the  west  of  the  sources  of 
the  Nile.  Indeed  without  the  assistance  of  the  notes  and 
information  given  and  obtained  by  Bruce,  Dr.  Beke's  last 
journey  through  northern  Damot  and  Agowmedre  could 
not  have  been  laid  down  in  the  accompanying  Maps.  At 
the  capital  of  Mettakel  the  Shangallas  who  came  to  attend 
it  had  never  before  seen  a  white  man.  Dr.  Beke  was  con- 
sequently an  object  of  great  curiosity. 

The  whole  country  westward  from  the  meridian  of  Gon- 
dar  to  the  Blue  Nile  has  been  delineated  from  a  careful 
perusal  of  Poncet's  travels  in  Abyssinia,  but  especially 
from  a  careful  examination  of  the  last  edition  of  Bruce's 
work,  and  the  notes  taken  by  that  traveller  when  on  the 
spot,  and  inserted  by  his  editor  in  different  parts  of  the 
different  volumes.  These  important  notes  have,  it  would 
appear,  been  hitherto  wholly  overlooked.  Hence  the 
errors  which  have  crept  into  the  geography  of  this  portion 
of  Africa.  His  account  of  the  country  between  the 
Tacazze  and  Gondar  is  fully  as  correct  as  RuppeU's,  and 
his  account  of  the  rivers  near  Gondar  is  much  more  clear 
and  satisfactory.  He  also  states  most  pointedly  the  fol- 
lowing curious  and  important  point  ;  namely,  that  the 
Angrab,  which  passes  round  Gondar,  runs  first  through  the 
low  country  of  Dembea,  and  then  northward  to  the  Ta- 
cazze, and  the  more  I  consider  the  subject  the  more  I  am 
inclined  to  consider  this  account  to  be  correct.  Ruppel's 
silence  does  not  invalidate  the  account ;  for  in  that  direction 


he  was  only  as  far  as  Azzazo,  and  does  not  say  one  word 
about  any  rivers  at  or  near  that  place.  The  account  which 
Bruce  gives  is  contained  in  the  narrative  of  his  journey 
from  Gondar  to  the  sources  of  the  Nile.  Before  coming 
to  Azzazo,  about  seven  miles  from  Gondar,  he  states  that 
he  passed  first  the  small  river  Shimfa,  and  next  the  Dum- 
aza,  larger  than  the  other,  and  on  the  banks  of  which  latter 
stream  Azzazo  is  situated.  "  The  Dumaza,"  says  he,  "  is 
a  very  clear  and  limpid  stream  running  briskly  over  a  small 
bed  of  pebbles  :  both  this  river  and  the  Shimfa  come  from 
Woggora  in  the  north-west ;  they  pass  the  hill  of  Koscam 
called  Debra  Tzai  (mountain  of  the  sun),  join  below  Azzazo, 
and  traversing  the  flat  country  of  Dambea  they  meet  the 
Angrab,  which  passes  by  Gondar,  and  with  it  fall  into  the 
Tacazze  or  Atbara."* 

Bruce  most  pointedly  and  repeatedly  states  in  the  notes 
alluded  to,  that  the  Bahr-el-abiad  had  no  great  western 
branch  ;  that  it  required  none,  but  that  the  parent  stream 
took  its  rise  to  the  south  of  Enarea. 

For  the  account  of  the  river  which  passes  by  Kachina- 
ara  and  joins  the  Chadda,  the  writer  of  this  is  indebted  to 
Captain  W.  Cook,  one  of  the  Commissioners  who  accom- 
panied the  late  Niger  Expedition.  The  account  he  received 
was  from  an  African  Mallam  or  Priest.  I  cannot  however 
refrain  from  expressing  my  opinion  that  the  Mallam  has  re- 
versed the  position  of  this  river  Fo  Kakchi,  and  that  the  fact 
is  the  river  comes  from  Mount  Thala,  a  ptirt  of  the  Man- 
dara  range,  and  flows  into  the  Chadda  on  the  north  side 
instead  of  the  south  side.    Still  the  Mallam  may  be  correct. 

The  point  which  Captain  Beecroft  reached  in  the  chief 
branch  of  the  Formosa,  in  Mr.  Jamieson's  vessel  the 
*  Bruce,  vol.  v.  p.  239. 


Ethiope  Steamer  in  1840,  is  distinctly  marked  in  the  Map. 
At  this  point  Captain  Beecroft  calculated  that  he  was  only 
about  twenty  miles  from  Aboh  or  Eboe  ;  and  where  he 
turned  back  the  stream  was  fifty  yards  broad,  five  fathoms 
deep,  and  the  current  upwards  of  three  knots  per  hour, 
and  this  toward  the  close  of  the  dry  season.  The  banks 
of  the  river  were  perfectly  level,  and  covered  with  long 
grass  or  reeds.  No  high  land  could  be  seen  in  any  direc- 
tion. The  other  branch  of  the  Formosa,  which  joins 
more  to  the  westward,  also  had  a  strong  current  and  four 
fathoms  water  at  the  extreme  point  reached.  The  War- 
ree  branch  had  never  less  than  five  fathoms  water,  and 
this  at  the  close  of  the  dry  season.  The  banks  of  this 
branch  were  high,  dry,  cultivated,  and  populous.  Captain 
Cook  saw  the  branch  which  runs  off  to  the  westward  about 
twenty-five  miles  above  Aboh.  It  was  about  1000  yards 
broad,  and  across  the  stream  eight  to  ten  fathoms  deep, 
with  a  small  island  in  the  middle.  This  was  the  state  of 
this  branch  in  the  flood.  It  appeared  to  be  as  large  as  the 
branch  running  south,    or  the  Nun. 

Interesting  accounts  have  just  been  received  from  two 
Missionaries,  one  belonging  to  the  Church  Missionary  So- 
ciety, and  the  other  to  the  Wesleyan  Society.  These  men 
had  been  invited  by  the  Chiefs  ruling  the  country  to  the 
north-east  of  Badagry  and  to  the  north  of  Benin  to  visit 
them.  They  had  penetrated  about  ninety  miles  into  the 
country  in  the  direction  of  north-east  from  Badagry,  and 
were  well  received.  The  capital  of  one  state  at  the  dis- 
tance mentioned  contains  about  40,000  inhabitants.  The 
country  is  described  as  populous,  exceedingly  fine  and  fertile, 
and  very  healthy. 

This  capital  is  named  Abbekuta,   governed  by  a  Chief 


named  Sodeke.  The  population  consists  of  the  Egba 
tribe  of  the  Akus  united.  Abbekuta  is  nine  days'  journey 
from  the  Niger,  and  situated  on  a  river  named  Ogu,  which 
joins  the  river  of  Lagos,  to  which  latter  place  it  is  navigable 
in  canoes  during  the  rains.  The  capital  appears  to  be  on 
the  east  side  of  the  river,  here  of  considerable  breadth,  but 
very  shallow  early  in  the  dry  season.  The  town  is  situated 
upon  a  hill,  from  which  the  view  is  very  fine,  and  the  river 
runs  through  a  fine  valley,  with  hills  on  either  hand.  The 
bottom  of  the  river  is  sandy  and  rocky,  and  no  miasma 
around  its  banks.  To  the  eastward  are  two  large  towns, 
called  Jai  and  Abada;  and  at  seven  days' journey  distant, 
is  Illome  in  the  Eyo  country,  and  two  days'  journey  from 
the  Niger.  Abbekuta  seems  to  be  a  great  thoroughfare  for 
the  people  of  Huassa  on  their  way  to  the  coast,  and  all 
travellers  are  here  treated  kindly.  Sodeke  expressed  the 
greatest  anxiety  for  Missionaries  to  come  and  reside  with 
them,  promising  them  every  support  and  protection.  The 
streets  of  Abbekuta  are  narrow  and  irregular.  Soon  after 
leaving  the  coast,  the  country  began  to  ascend  and  hills  to 
make  their  appearance.  The  time  occupied  in  travelling 
from  Badagry  to  Abbekuta  at  a  brisk  rate  was  about  thirty 
hours.  The  necessaries  of  life  are  abundant  in  the  capital. 
Horses,  sheep,  goats,  cows,  fowls,  and  pigeons  are  in 
great  abundance.  The  people  manufacture  leather  of  va- 
rious kinds  and  articles  of  leather,  saddles,  shoes,  slippers, 
and  cushions ;  and  of  iron  they  manufacture  bits  for  their 
horses,  stirrup  irons,  clasp  knives,  hoes,  and  bill-hooks  in 
imitation  of  English.  About  half  way  between  Badagry 
and  Abbekuta,  a  considerable  town,  named  Adu,  lay  one 
day's  journey  distant  from  the  road,  eastward  it  is  supposed  ; 
and  by  this  town  a  river  called  Adu   (the   Doo  probably  of 


our  maps  and  the  same  as  the  Ogu)  ran  to  the  Lagos.  Jaboo 
seems  to  be  to  the  east  or   to  the  south-east  of  Abbekuta. 

A  very  interesting  letter  from  a  Medical  Gentleman  who 
has  lately  visited  the  Gaboon  River  has  just  come  into  the 
hands  of  the  writer  of  this  Memoir.  He  gives  a  very  fa- 
vourable account  of  the  disposition  of  the  people,  and  the 
very  considerable  advance  which  they  have  made  in  civili- 
zation. Their  houses  are  neat  and  comfortable,  and  their 
towns  laid  out  in  regular  streets.  They  treat  their  women 
with  kindness  and  equality,  and  sit  and  eat,  and  converse 
with  them  at  the  same  table.  They  are  fond  of  English 
customs  and  dress,  and  carry  on  considerable  traffic  with 
English  and  French  vessels.  In  old  Calabar  a  great  deal 
of  business  is  also  carried  on.  The  Chief  has  about  200 
large  canoes  engaged  in  the  palm-oil  trade  and  other  des- 
criptions of  traffic  with  the  interior  parts.  He  is  also  deter- 
mined to  set  his  people  to  cultivate  the  soil,  and  calls  for 
people  to  instruct  them.  The  English  Language  is  gene- 
rally and  fluently  spoken  in  this  quarter,  and  their  accounts 
kept  in  it. 

In  reference  to  the  matter  stated  in  page  64  about  a 
river  entering  the  sea  in  north  latitude  two  degrees  on  the 
east  coast  of  Africa,  as  reported  by  Captain  Harris,  and 
published  in  the  Bombay  Times,  it  is  necessary  to  observe 
that  Abulfeda  states*  that  the  river  named  after  the  town 
enters  the  sea  "  near  Makdishu,"  or  Magadoxo.  His 
words  are  :  f  "  It  has  a  large  river  like  the  Nile  of  Egypt, 
which  swells  in  the  summer  season.  It  is  said  to  be  a 
branch  of  the  Nile  which  issues  from  Lake  Kaura  (Zana) 
and  runs  into  the  Indian  Sea  near  Makdishu."     The  Arabic 

♦See  Macqueen's  Geographical  Survey  of  Africa,  1840.  p.  246. 
t  See  Lee's  Batouta,  p.  55. 


expression  branch  of  the  Nile,  is  now  well  understood  only 
to  mean  that  the  river  rises  in  the  same  district   of  Africa 
that  gives  birth  to  the  Blue  River,  or  the  Abawi.     All  the 
early  Portuguese  navigators   and   maps  acknowledge  and 
insert  this  river,   and  mention  the   same  particulars  con- 
cerning it.     In  a  Map  of  Africa  constructed  by  J.   Senex, 
from  the  observations  of  the  Royal   Societies  of  London 
and  Paris,  and  dedicated  to   Sir  Isaac  Newton,   and  com- 
piled,  as  regards   these   parts  of  Africa,  from  the  Portu- 
guese materials,  we  find  this  river  laid  down  roughly,  but 
by  no  means  very  inaccurately,    its  source  near    Gumar, 
which  place  is  to  the  south-east  of  Bargamo,  and  its  mouth 
a  little  to  the   north  of  Magadoxo,  exactly  in  two  degrees 
north  latitude.     A  few    months  ago  Messrs.  Krapf  and 
Isenberg  wrote  the  Society   from  Zeilah  that  the  large 
river  called  Wabhe  or  Webbe  ran  to  the  south  of  Hurrur 
southward  to  the  sea  at  Magadoxo,  and  that  there  was  a 
caravan  route  from  Zeilah  to  that  place  which  occupied  a 
journey  of  two  months.     Batouta  mentions   this  caravan 
route,  and  gives  the  same  time  and  distance  from  Zeilah  to 
Magadoxo.     Bruce  lays  down  this  river  as  the  Webbe. 
Salt,  in  the  valuable  chart  of  the  east  coast  of  Africa  and 
map  inserted  in  his    last  voyage,    quarto,    page    13,     in 
1814,  lays  down  this  river  under  the  name  of  the  Webbe 
and  all  its  early  branches  very  fairly.     One  descends  from 
the  east  of  the   Aroosee  Galla,  and   another,  the  longest, 
from  the  country  east  of  the  sources  of  the  Magar  and 
south  of  Gurague,  exactly  as  I  hnd  I  have  placed  them  in 
the  Map  from  accounts  obtained  by  Mr.  Krapf,  and  also  the 
accounts    which   Captain   Harris   had  received  from  him 
when  at  Ankobar,  and  inserted  in  the  last  number  of  the 
Journal  of  the  Royal   Geographical  Society.     Salt  brings 


the  river  to  the  sea  a  little  to  the  south  of  Magadoxo,  in 
which  he  is  probably  correct.  Captain  Cook,  who  was  at 
Magadoxo  and  close  upon  the  coast  to  a  distance  of  six- 
teen miles  to  the  north  of  the  place,  informs  me  that  he 
could  see  no  river  entering  the  sea  within  that  space  ;  but 
he  added  that  he  was  informed  a  large  river  ran  to  the 
westward  a  short  distance  to  the  north  of  Brava.  If  this 
account  is  correct,  the  river  in  question  may  enter  the  sea 
between  the  Juba  and  Brava.  The  late  Mr.  Arrowsmith 
in  his  Map  of  Africa  has  a  river  near  and  to  the  south  of 
Magadoxo ;  the  river  of  Juba,  and  also  a  river  at  Doaro. 
There  seems  to  be  a  river  and  a  province  called  Doaro  in 
the  south,  and  that  this  province  has  been  confounded  with 
Dowarro  on  the  north. 

Of  the  well-known  existence,  therefore,  of  a  large  river 
near  Magodoxo,  and  its  course  from  the  north,  there  can  be 
no  doubt.  While  correcting  these  pages  for  the  press,  a 
letter  has  been  received  from  Captain  Haines  at  Aden, 
dated  June  2nd,  giving  some  important  and  specific  infor- 
mation regarding  the  magnitude  of  a  river  in  this  quarter. 
In  consequence  of  the  information  which  he  had  received 
from  Captain  Harris  he  sent  Lieutenant  Christopher  of  the 
Indian  Navy  to  seek  for  and  to  examine  it.  This  officer 
found  and  went  up  the  river  130  miles,  and  found  it 
throughout  this  distance  from  200  to  300  feet  broad,  and 
from  sixteen  to  sixty  feet  deep,  a  clear  meandering  stream. 
The  country  around  its  banks  was  very  fine,  beautiful,  and 
pretty  weU  cultivated,  and  the  population  intelligent, 
friendly,  and  civil.  They  stated  that  the  stream  was  navi- 
gable upwards  to  a  great  distance,  and  that  both  it  and  the 
Juba  joined  the  Gojob ;  in  other  words,  that  the  sources 
of  the  parent  stream  of  both  rivers  came  from  the  same  por- 


tion  of  Africa  to  the  north  ;  for  this  mode  of  joining  and  se- 
parating rivers  is  a  very  common  mode  of  Africans,  but 
especially  Arabs,  stating  such  matters.  The  letter  from 
Captain  Haines  gives  no  name  to  the  river,  nor  does  he 
state  the  exact  place  in  latitude  where  it  enters  the  sea, 
but  merely  that  it  does  so  to  the  north  of  the  Juba,  which 
latter  is  very  nearly  under  the  equinoctial  line. 

As  but  few  points  in  the  interior  of  Africa  have  been 
fixed  by  correct  astronomical  observations,  it  is  to  be  dis- 
tinctly understood  that  the  accompanying  Maps  have  gene- 
rally been  constructed  on  the  data  afforded  by  days' journeys ; 
and  that  several  rivers,  especially  the  middle  portions  of 
some  of  these,  have  been  drawn  in  the  supposed  general  bear- 
ings of  the  great  valleys  through  which  these  must  flow. 


July  31,   1843. 


&c.  &c. 




April  2,  1839,  Zeila. — Our  sojourn  in  this  place,  1 
hope,  is  now  over.  If  it  please  God,  we  shall  set  sail 
to-morrow  in  our  small  boat,  and  proceed  onward  to 
Tadjurra.  Hitherto  the  Lord  has  helped  us.  The 
Governor  here  has  treated  us  kindly.     The   first  cvcn- 



ing  of  our  visit,  he  sent  us  a  present  of  a  sheep ;  and 
this  morning,  a  buck.  He  offered  us  also  two  houses; 
one  as  a  dwelling,  and  the  other  for  a  store  house. 
Besides  this,  he  gave  us  a  letter  of  introduction  to  the 
Governor  of  Tadjurra,  and  tendered  every  other  assis- 
tance we  might  need.  In  return  for  this  he  only  re- 
quired, that  we  should  give  him  written  recommenda- 
tions to  Captain  Haines,  Hassan  Effendi,  and  to  all 
English  travellers  and  captains  of  vessels.  These  we 
wrote  for  him ;  and  on  delivering  them,  apologized  for 
not  being  able  to  offer  him  an  adequate  present.  How- 
ever, he  then  asked  for  something,  observing  that  his 
object  was  not  gain  :  that  he  did  not  want  anything  of 
much  value,  but  requested  it  only  that  he  might  be  re- 
spected by  his  people.  We  examined  our  baggage,  and 
finding  a  good  caftan  belonging  to  the  Rev.  J.  L. 
Krapf,  a  silk  handkerchief  and  a  box  of  lucifers,  we 
gave  them  to  him.  He  looked  with  indifference  at 
these  presents,  and  repeated  that  he  did  not  care  about 
having  these  things,  but  only  for  our  friendship ;  and 
that  he  preferred  good  recommendations  to  presents. 
Thus  far  he  appeared  to  understand  his  interest.  We 
are  very  anxious  to  know  what  will  be  the  consequences 
of  this  visit.  From  what  we  have  seen,  we  think  we 
may  conclude  that  the  time  is  not  far  distant,  when 
this  place  will  be  accessible  to  every  European,  and  an 
entrance  be  open  from  hence  to  Shoa  and  to  the  in- 
terior of  Africa. 

Zeila  is  an  old  town,  and  was  formerly  of  greater 


importance ;  but  at  present  it  is,  for  the  most  part,  in 
rnins.  It  is  surrounded  by  walls,  and  has,  on  the 
land  side,  seven  pieces  of  ordnance,  pointed  towards 
the  Somals ;  with  whom  the  town  has  continual  inter- 
course. It  appears,  however,  that  they  are  not  on  good 
terms  ;  as  every  mission  into  the  country  for  a  supply 
of  water,  is  escorted  by  a  party  of  soldiers.  The  town 
consists  of  about  a  hundred  straw-huts,  and  eight 
stone  houses.  We  are  not  able  to  ascertain  the  precise 
number  of  inhabitants,  or  of  houses;  but  suppose  the  town 
may  contain  a  mixed  population  of  eight  hundred  souls; 
the  greater  part  of  whom  are  Somals,  with  some  Dana- 
kils  and  Arabs.  The  language  of  the  Somals  appears  to 
have  some  affinity  to  that  of  the  Gallas ;  w'hile  that  of 
the  Danakils  is  the  same  as  that  of  the  Shohos,  with  a 
little  dialectic  difference  :  the  nation  is  the  same.  Some 
understand  and  speak  the  Amharic  also.  Considerable 
intercourse  is  kept  up  with  Horror.  Several  small 
vessels  have  just  returned  from  Berbera.  The  market, 
w^hich  is  held  in  that  place,  and  is  the  only  cause  of 
such  a  concourse  of  people  frequenting  it,  is  now 
closed,  on  account  of  the  approaching  rains.  It  appears 
that  the  bad  quality  of  the  water  is  a  principal  reason 
why  no  houses  or  fixed  habitations  have  been  erected 
there.  I  was  led  to  this  conjecture  by  the  arrival  of  a 
small  boat  this  evening,  belonging  to  Shermarke,  a 
Somal  Chief  of  that  country,  and  a  friend  of  the  Eng- 
lish, which  had  come  to  fetch  water.  On  asking  why 
they  came  for  water,  they  said  that  the  water  of  Ber- 
B  2 

4  THE    SOMALS. 

bera  was  so  brackish^  that  it  could  hardly  be  used  for 

.  On  our  arrival  here,  a  great  crowd  of  people,  chiefly 
children,  gathered  about  us  :  the  good  reception,  how- 
ever, wliich  we  met  with  from  the  Governor,  kept  them 
in  order.  On  the  following  morning,  about  fifty  armed 
soldiers  accompanied  us ;  and  whenever  we  were  in 
town,  a  soldier  usually  preceded  us,  in  order  to  prevent 
our  being  annoyed,  until  at  length  the  people  seemed 
to  have  lost  their  curiosity  to  see  us.  During  our  stay, 
however,  we  resided  on  board  the  vessel.  There  were 
eight  boats  in  the  harbour,  two  of  which  belonged  to 
the  brother-in-law  of  Sheik  Taib,  in  Aden.  The 
Hais  of  one  of  these  boats  had  seen  us  last  year  in 
Massowah,  on  our  return  from  Abyssinia.  This  harbour 
is  very  bad,  there  being  sand  banks  near. 

Since  last  Lord's  Day,  a  brig  has  been  observed  off  the 
port ;  but  it  could  not  be  ascertained  to  what  nation  it 
belonged  :  she  seemed  as  though  she  wanted  to  make  the 
harbour,  but  could  not.  Yesterday  evening,  three  guns 
were  heard  from  the  island  of  Saad-ed-deen ;  in  conse- 
quence of  which,  the  Governor  despatched  a  boat  thither 
to-day,  in  order  to  look  out  for  the  vessel,  and  bring  her 
in.  In  the  afternoon  the  boat  returned  :  they  had  seen 
the  brig  in  the  direction  of  Tadjurra ;  but  were  unable 
to  reach  her,  or  learn  any  particulars. 

The  Governor  of  this  place  is  a  man  not  quite  thirty 
years  old,  with  an  intelligent,  serious,  and  grave  air  and 
demeanor;  of  a  middling  stature  and  slender  make. 

COSTUME    AND    FOOD    OF    ZEILA.  5 

The  Somals  have  a  singular  taste  for  red  hair.  This 
is  considered  an  ornament  of  which  they  are  prond ; 
and  to  produce  it  they  use  certain  means  by  which 
they  dye  black  hair  red.  The  natui'e  of  their  hair  seems 
to  be  the  same  as  that  of  the  Abyssinian s :  it  is  curled 
artificially.  They  also  besmear  it  with  butter^  but  do 
not  plait  it ;  at  least  we  have  not  yet  seen  any  plaited 

The  costume  of  the  natives  of  Zeila^  and  the  Somals, 
is  nearly  the  same  as  that  of  the  Abyssinians  ;  except 
that  trowsers  are  not  universally  worn.  The  females 
go  chiefly  unveiled,  having  only  a  cloth,  generally  blue, 
tied  round  their  heads.  The  dress  of  the  women  is  to- 
tally different  from  the  Abyssinians  and  Arabs. 

The  food  of  the  inhabitants  of  Zeila  seems  to  con- 
sist chiefly  of  maize,  dates,  and  milk,  particularly  camels^: 
flesh  is  also  eaten  by  those  who  can  aff^ord  it.  Rice  is 
imported  from  India,  and  coffee  from  Horror ;  both  of 
which  are  dear  here. 

The  traffic  of  this  place,  as  in  Abysinnia,  is  conducted 
chiefly  by  barter.  Cloths  are  purchased  with  money  ; 
these  are  exchanged  for  corn ;  and  in  lieu  of  corn  any 
thing  may  be  procured.  The  Indian  cloth,  in  which 
they  trade,  is  of  three  kinds.  The  best  is  Kash  :  of  this 
we  obtained  seventeen  Zeila  yards,  about  equal  to  a 
Brabant  yard,  for  a  dollar.  An  inferior  kind  is  called 
Ilurmia  :  it  is  made  of  cotton,  but  appears  to  be 
stronger  than  that  manufactured  in  Abyssinia. 

jlpril  3,  1839. — Late  yesterday  evening  I  sent  the 
B  3 


Governor  the  above-mentioned  recommendations.  About 
half    an  hour  afterward^  and  before  he  had   received 
them,  a  messenger  arrived  from  him,  asking  for  them, 
and  bringing  back  the  presents   which  we  had  given 
him,  except  the  lucifer  matches ;  wdth  the  remark,  that 
such  caftans  wxre  not  worn  in  this  country  :  that  he 
would  have  been  glad  if  we  could  have  given  him  some- 
thing which  might  have  shown  our  respect  tov/ard  him 
before  the  people  ;    but  that  if  w^e   had  nothing,  it 
would  make  no  difference — he  would  nevertheless  serve 
us  in  every  thing.     The  messenger  at  the  same  time 
hinted  that  a  present  of  about  100  dollars  would  have 
been  agreeable  to  the  Governor.     AVe  sent  him  word, 
that  we  felt  sorry  at  not  being  able  to  recompense  his 
kindness  by   something  that   might  please  him ;  that 
the  object  of  our  journey  did  not  lead  us  to  think  of 
presents,  what   we   had   being  just   sufficient  for    the 
indispensable  wants  of  our  journey,  and  that  w^hat  we 
offered   him  was  all  we  could  spare  :  moreover,  that  he 
ought  not  to  estimate  our  friendship  by  any  present, 
although  we  intended  in  future  to  remember  him  in 
some  more   positive  manner :  meanwhile  we  thanked 
him  for  the  friendship  shown  to  us,  and  commended 
ourselves  afresh  to  his  kindness.     The  messenger  pro- 
mised to  deliver  our  answei",  and  we  gave  him  a    dollar 
in  remuneration.    He  then  begged  the  present  returned 
by  the  Governor,  for  himself  and  his  children  ;  but  we 
refused,  saying,  that  as  the  Governor   did  not  like  it, 
it  would  serve  very  well  for  our  own  use. 


The  Governor  also  informed  us,  that  a  boat  which 
had  arrived  this  evening  from  Berbera  had  brought 
the  news,  that  Shermarke  was  on  board  the  brig 
which  had  been  seen  yesterday,  and  that  he  had  gone 
to  Tadjurra. 

About  ten  o^clock  this  morning  we  got  under  weigh 
with  three  other  boats,  which  also  go  to  Tadjurra  : — 
wind  blo^nng  north-east. 

I  asked  some  of  our  crew,  who  are  Somals,  whe- 
ther their  hair  was  naturally  red  :  they  answered  in 
the  negative.  On  enquiring  how  they  dyed  it,  they 
said,  that  they  besmeared  it  first  with  wet  lime,  after- 
Avard  with  butter,  then  with  mud  ;  and  that  when  the 
hair  began  to  redden,  they  applied  to  it  the  juice  of  a 
plant.  The  captain  said,  that  they  moistened  the  lime 
with  the  urine  of  camels ;  but  the  pilot  denied  it  with 
horror,  saying,  that  the  Bedouins  only  did  so,  who  do 
not  pray. 

Evening.  As  the  wind  was  from  the  north-east,  we 
could  not  get  out  into  the  open  sea,  but  made  our  way 
between  the  small  islands  along  the  coast.  It  was  as 
pleasant  as  sailing  on  the  Nile.  We  passed  the  Sheikas 
Islands,  and  the  Island  of  Hagila;  and  all  the  four 
boats  came  to  anchor  near  the  small  island  of  Assuba. 
As  it  was  early,  we  went  on  shore  to  gather  shells,  of 
which  there  was  a  great  variety. 

Jpril  4,  1839. — We  arrived  at  Tadjurra  at  half  past 
two  o'clock  this  afternoon,  and  went  directly  to  the  so- 
called  Sultan,  whom  we  found  sitting  in  the   shade  be- 


fore  his  house,  leaning  against  the  wall,  with  some  of 
his  attendants  near  him  on  either  side.  He  is  an  old 
man  of  about  sixty  years  of  age.  He  saluted  us  with 
gestures ;  and  we  delivered  our  letter  of  introduction 
from  the  Governor  of  Zeila,  which  he  received  in 
silence.  We  sat  a  little  while,  and  then  he  made  us  a 
signal  to  retire ;  on  which  we  accompanied  ovir  guide, 
Mahomed  Ali,  to  a  house  which  he  showed  us  as  our 
dwelling,  constructed  of  sprigs  covered  inside  and  out- 
side with  mats,  and  divided  into  four  apartments,  like 
the  houses  in  Arkeeko.  As  our  baggage  was  yet  in 
the  boat,  we  had  to  go  on  board  again,  to  get  it  on 
shore.  In  the  harbour  we  saw  the  above  mentioned 
brig.  It  was  a  merchantman,  called  the  "  Euphrasia," 
Capt,  Blondeau,  a  Frenchman,  from  Mauritius,  with 
whom  we  met  Lieut.  Tilley,  an  Englishman.  On 
reaching  our  boat,  the  Captain  came  up  to  us.  We 
saluted  each  other ;  and  he  then  sent  a  boat  to  take  us 
to  his  vessel,  where  we  passed  the  night. 

Jpril  5,  1839. — This  morning  we  removed  our  bag- 
gage from  the  boat  to  our  temporary  dwelling.  We 
should  have  been  glad  to  have  arranged  matters  for  our 
journey ;  but  the  Captain  and  Shermarke  obliged  us, 
against  our  will,  to  settle  a  quarrel  between  them,  which 
took  up  the  greater  part  of  the  day. 

April  6 — By  the  brig  "  Euphrasia,"  which  left 
early  this  morning,  we  despatched  letters  for  Cairo  and 
Europe.  Tadjurra  is  a  far  more  miserable  town  than 
Zeila.     Its  geographical  situation  is  wrongly  marked 

TADJl'RRA.  y 

on  the  maps  :  it  is  at  a  much  greater  distance  from 
Zeila,  and,  as  we  were  informed  on  board  the  ''Eu])hra- 
sia/^  its  northern  latitude  is  11°  58'. 

The  houses  are  all  made  of  sprigs  :  there  are  about 
iifty  connected  yards  in  the  place,  each  of  which  in- 
closes several  sprig  hovels.  The  inhabitants  are  Dana- 
kils  :  their  sovereign  is  called  Sultan,  or  Dardar 
Mahomed.  He  appears  to  be  a  good-natured  man,  but 
of  limited  acquirement ;  as  he  does  not  seem  to  know 
how  to  read  Arabic,  neither  does  he  speak  it  fluently. 

The  people  here  have  seen  but  very  few  Europeans 
among  them ;  hence  we  are  the  objects  of  their  gi'cat- 
est  curiosity.  This,  indeed,  was  the  case  also  at  Zeila ; 
but  there  we  stopped  on  board  the  ship,  whereas  here 
we  live  among  them,  and  are  consequently  much  more 
exposed  to  their  gaze. 

The  so-called  Sultan,  who,  on  our  first  interview  with 
him,  put  on  so  grave  an  air,  called  on  us  to-day,  to 
ask  for  a  present :  however,  his  subject,  IMahomed  Ali, 
put  him  to  silence. 

April  8 — Yesterday  was  a  day  of  trial  to  us.  In 
the  afternoon,  the  Sultan  came  witli  his  Vizier  and 
Cadi,  to  make  an  agreement  with  us  about  the  camels 
and  mules  for  our  journey.  If  the  Sultan  looks  rather 
diminutive,  the  Vizier's  bodily  circumference  on  the 
contrary,  is  well  suited  to  his  title.  "While  these  gentle- 
men were  seated  with  him,  the  Sultan  sent  for  the 
Letter  from  the  Governor  of  Zeila.  The  messenger,  on 
his  return,  threw  the  Letter  at  the  feet  of  his  master  :  it 

10  VISIT    FROM    THE 

was  then  picked  up^  and  the  Sultan  stuck  it  into  his 
turban.  By  this  ceremony  he  wished  to  display  his 
kingly  dignity.  A  long  dispute  now  ensued  about  the 
hire  of  mules  and  camels.  They  asked  twenty  dollars 
hire  for  every  mulc^  and  would  not  consent  to  any  re- 
duction. For  every  camel  they  demanded,  at  first, 
twenty-six  dollars  ;  and  when  we  referred  to  the  order 
of  the  Governor  of  Zeila,  that  we  should  have  the  ani- 
mals at  the  usual  caravan  price,  they  said  that  the 
caravan  price  for  a  camel  was  a  female  slave.  On  closer 
inquiry,  we  learned  that  the  caravans  generally  have 
camels  of  their  own.  Only  in  one  instance,  when  the 
King  of  Shoa  had  ordered  some  small  cannon,  he  paid 
a  female  slave  for  every  camel.  This  gave  us  an  oppor- 
tunity to  protest  against  tbe  slave-trade ;  saying,  that 
we  could  in  no  wise  engage  in  such  traffic.  They  then 
fixed  the  price  of  each  at  twenty-three  dollars.  At 
length  we  determined  to  purchase  two  mules,  and  to 
hire  only  as  many  camels  as  were  requisite  to  carry  our 
most  indispensable  baggage,  and  to  let  our  attendants 
ride  on  the  same.  After  these  people  had  left  us,  we 
consulted  together ;  but  were  at  a  loss  what  to  do,  as 
our  pecuniary  means  were  so  sadly  reduced.  Finally, 
we  deliberated  whether  one  of  us  had  not  better  pro- 
ceed to  Aden,  and  draw  money  there.  We  had,  indeed, 
written  to  Captain  Haines,  and  to  Bombay,  for  400 
dollars  :  but  it  might  be  some  time  before  this  could 
reach  us.  This  plan,  however,  was  also  objectionable 
in    many   respects.       It  is   the    Lord^s    will  that    we 


here  suffer  tribulation,  that  we  may  draw  nearer  to 

To-day,  after  supper,  the  Sultan  called  on  us,  begging 
some  medicine  for  a  sick  woman.  He  was  more  fami- 
liar than  usual.  When  we  asked  how  old  he  was,  he 
replied,  "  Between  thirty  and  forty."  He  was  ignorant 
of  his  own  age,  but  said  that  he  was  a  boy,  and  un- 
married, when  he  became  Sultan.  His  silvery  beard, 
however,  shows  that  he  cannot  be  far  from  sixty.  On 
this  occasion  we  also  learned,  that  the  dignity  of  the 
Sultan  and  Vizier  is  hereditary  in  this  country,  and  is 
divided  between  the  two  families;  so  that  after  the  de- 
cease of  the  Sultan,  his  Vizier  succeeds  him,  and  the 
son  of  the  Sultan  succeeds  the  Vizier. 

Our  Rais,  iNIahomed  Kassem,  took  leave  of  us  to- 
day. I  gave  him  Letters  for  Cairo,  which  he  is  to  for- 
ward by  way  of  Zeila. 

April  9,  1839.— At  one  o'clock  p.m.  the  thermo- 
meter was  at  93°  in  the  shade. 

April  10— We  wrote  several  Letters  last  night. 
Collected  to-day  some  Dankali  words  :  closed  the  col- 
lection of  Amharic  words  from  Exodus,  and  began  with 
Leviticus.  We  gave  some  oil  of  turpentine  yesterday, 
with  good  effect,  to  a  wife  of  the  Sultan,  as  a  remedy 
against  hysterics. 

Xpril  16 — We  have  been  detained  till  this  day  by 
the  illness  of  INIahomed  Ali,  our  guide.  Wrote  Letters 
for  Cairo  and  London,  and  sent  them  to  Mocha  by  a 
boat  belonging  to  Mahomed  Ali.  The  business  about  the 


mules  and  camels  has  given  us  a  great  deal  of  trouble^  on 
account  of  our  scanty  funds.  The  SuUan  has  grown 
more  and  more  friendly  toward  us ;  and  once  brought 
us,  in  his  own  hands,  a  jug  of  milk,  and,  at  another  time, 
a  buck.  As  a  present,  he  only  asked  for  a  piece  of 
bafta,  to  get  a  dress  made  for  himself;  and  promised  to 
let  us  have  camels  for  fifteen  dollars  each,  as  we  insisted 
that  he  should.  Yesterday  evening,  however,  when  he 
again  called  on  us,  he  fixed  the  price  at  seventeen 
dollars ;  to  which  Ave  agreed  this  morning,  lest  we 
should  cause  ourselves  any  further  delay. 

Warkieh  had  yesterday  another  attack  of  fever ;  and  I 
therefore  bled  him  to-day.  Brother  Krapf  is  also  ap- 
prehensive of  falling  ill  again  here. 

Mahomed  Ali  expressed  his  fears  this  morning,  that 
if  this  country  were  frequented  by  English  travellers, 
they  might  put  down  the  slave  trade.  We  told  him  that 
the  English  would  not  interfere  with  their  trade,  as  long 
as  matters  were  not  settled  between  the  Sultan  Maho- 
med and  the  Pasha  of  Egypt.  He  is  afraid  that  we 
are  going  to  persuade  the  King  of  Shoa  to  relinquish 
the  slave  trade,  which  appears  to  bring  them  considera- 
ble gain. 

The  Sultan  has  just  now  been  here  again :  he  said, 
that  he  received  yearly  200  head  of  cattle,  camels,  cows, 
sheep,  and  goats,  as  a  tribute  from  the  Danakil  Tribes. 
Yv'hen  asked  whether  he  had  not  to  pay  any  tribute  to 
the  Pasha  of  Egypt,  he  said  "  No  : "  but  when  I  asked 
whether  he  had  to  pay  tribute  to  the  Governor  of  Zeila, 


he  replied,  that  the  Governor  of  Zeila  had  three-quar- 
ters of  a  dollar  for  every  female  slave  sold  here,  whereas 
he  receives  yearly  twenty  dollars  from  Zeila. 

With  the  help  of  God,  I  have  to-day  finished  the 
arrangement  and  insertion  into  the  Lexicon  of  the  words 
collected  from  the  Pentateuch,  and  gathered,  also,  a  few 
Dankali  words.  IMay  the  Lord  bless  this  work,  and 
also  my  fiu'ther  proceedings,  if  He  permit  me  to  con- 
tinue them  !  It  is  a  grain  of  corn,  which  one  day  may 
bring  forth  fruit.  May  He  draw  our  hearts  more  and 
more  to  Himself,  though  it  be  through  sufferings  ! 

Airril  18, 1839. — This  afternoon,  by  the  help  of  God, 
I  terminated  the  perusal  of  the  Pentateuch,  which  I 
began  at  Jidda.  I  inserted  all  the  words  into  the 
Lexicon,  as  I  had  begun  so. 

We  bought  a  mule  from  our  guide,  IMahomed  Ah ; 
and  the  camels  are  engaged  at  the  rate  of  seventeen 

April  23 — Yesterday  the  heat  was  very  intense,  the 
thermometer  standing  at  95°  in  our  room ;  but  to-day 
it  was  only  90°,  the  sky  being  overcast. 

A  Mahomedan  merchant  from  Tigr^,  who  came 
hither,  from  Bcrbera,  on  commercial  business,  gave  us 
some  information  concerning  Enarea,  Sidama,  and 
Gui-agiie ;  which  he  had  obtained  chiefly  from  slaves. 
In  these  three  countries  there  are  many  Christians.  The 
race  of  men  in  Sidama  is  said  to  be  su})erior,  and  of  a 
hghter  colour  even  than  the  Gallas.  They  say  that  the 
present  ruler  of  Enarea,  Abba  Gibbo,  has  broken  the 

14  "discusssion  with 

caravan  intercourse  between  Gondar  and  Sidania.  His 
father,  Abba  Gumbal,  sought  to  destroy  his  sons  and 
brothers  ;  but  Abba  Gibbo  gained  the  ascendancy,  and 
deposed  his  father,  leaving  him  only  on  his  pay  and  the 
government  of  a  small  district.  The  traffic  in  slaves 
is  very  considerable  in  these  countries,  and  seems  to  be 
much  promoted  by  the  King  of  Shoa.  Our  guide, 
Mahomed  Ali,  is  much  afraid  that  we  shall  persuade 
him  to  abaiidon  it.  We  have  tried  to  set  him  at  ease 
in  this  respect  as  much  as  possible;  but,  nevertheless, 
he  appears  to  distrust  the  English.  Our  stay  here,  which 
has  been  very  trying  on  account  of  the  great  heat,  will 
now,  I  hope,  soon  draw  to  a  close. 

The  Sultan  came  again  yesterday  evening,  with  a 
little  hurdle  basket  full  of  milk,  and  to-day  he  called 
thrice.  We  have  bought  a  mule,  and  negotiated  for 
another,  which  was  found  to  be  unserviceable.  The  day 
after  to-morrow  we  are  to  start  for  our  journey. 

This  evening,  Warkieh  had  a  discussion  with  the 
above  mentioned  jMahomedan  Tigre  merchant,  j\Iaho- 
med,  concerning  Islamism ;  in  which,  after  a  while, 
Mahomed  Ali  also  joined.  Warkieh  required  witnesses 
in  behalf  of  the  Koran.  After  a  long  dispute,  the 
words  of  Moses,  a  prophet  like  unto  me,  were  quoted ; 
when  I  came  to  Warkieh's  assistance,  opposing  them 
with  the  context, //"o?»  the  midst  of  thee,  as  relating  to 
Christ,  not  to  jMahomed  ;  and  showing  how  the  Law, 
the  Prophets,  and  the  Gospel  agree  with  one  another  ; 
whereas  the  Koran  agreed  with  none  of  these,  which 


would  be  necessary  if  it  were  the  accomplisliment  of 
tlie  whole.  Mahomed,  the  merchant^  said,  "  It  is  true 
that  all  wisdom  and  knowledge  is  with  the  Franks ; 
only  with  regard  to  religion  they  are  in  error."  I 
rejoined  :  "  If  you  must  admit  that  we  are  superior  to 
you  in  the  things  relating  only  to  this  world — and  these 
are  indeed  very  insignificant  in  comparison  to  the  great 
questions,  '  ^VhsLt  must  I  do  to  be  saved  ? '  '  How  shall 
I  save  my  soul  from  sin,  and  the  curse  which  is  attached 
toit?^ — do  you  not  think  that  we  also  inquire  into 
this  most  important  of  all  questions  ?  "  I  then  briefly 
proclaimed  Jesus  Christ  to  him,  as  the  only  Redeemer 
sent  from  God  to  us  sinners — that  it  was  He  alone  who 
could  save  us  on  the  Day  of  Judgment,  when  all  other 
prophets,  and  so-called  Saviours,  would  have  to  look 
for  help  for  their  own  souls.  Hereupon  he  appeared 
to  grow  rather  thoughtful ;  for  as  he  rose  to  retire,  he 
said,  "  We  have  discussed  many  things  to-day,  and  you 
have  frightened  us." 



April  25,  1839. — Yesterday  our  departure  was  deter- 
mined on  for  this  day.  Mahomed  Ali  got  half  his  wages 
as  guide,  viz.  twenty-six  dollars  out  of  fifty;  and  for 
the  hire  for  the  camels,  thirty-four  of  the  sixty-eight ; 
in  all,  sixty  dollars.  To  the  Sultan  we  gave  a  present  of 
sixteen  yards  of  bafta,  worth  a  dollar  and  a  half,  and  a 
small  piece  of  Siamoise,  worth  two  dollars.  On  ashing 
for  more,  we  also  gave  him  three  dollars  in  silver,  an 
old  handkerchief,  and  some  needles. 

Here  IMahomed  Ali  again  evinced  his  selfishness,  by 
stating,  that  he  would  only  guide  us  as  far  as  the  re- 


sidence  of  his  father^  Errer ;  from  whence  his  father 
would  go  with  us  as  far  as  Ankobar ;  proposing,  as 
dragoman  and  footman  on  the  road,  AU  Arab,  a  mer- 
chant of  this  ])lace,  who  is  generally  employed  as  dra- 
goman by  the  Sultan.  Of  course  he  durst  not  ask  any 
thing  for  his  father ;  but  he  would  not  take  Ali  Arab 
at  his  own  expense.  At  last,  we  agreed  to  give  him 
fifteen  dollars  for  his  companion,  as  he  seemed  to  be  a 
judicious  and  well-informed  man. 

A  caravan  starting  to-day,  we  wished  to  join  them 
as  far  as  the  salt  plain ;  but  two  of  Mahomed  Ali^s 
people  having  absented  themselves  with  a  camel,  and 
not  returning  till  noon,  he  postponed  our  departure  till 
the  following  morning;  saying,  that  we  could  easily 
make,  in  one  day,  the  two  little  journeys  AA^hich  the 
caravan  would  make  to-day  and  to-morrow,  as  it  was 
only  five  hours'  distance — two  from  this  to  Ambabo, 
and  three  from  thence  to  Diilliil. 

Jpril  21 — ^Yesterday  our  departure  was  finally 
effected.  AVe  rose  very  early  in  the  morning,  and  had 
the  camels  saddled  by  a  quarter  to  seven.  We  then 
set  out,  and  reached  Ambabo  at  a  quarter  before  ten, 
where  we  encamped  beneath  some  palm  trees.  The 
distance  from  Tadjurra  is  about  an  hour  and  a  half :  it 
lies  W.  S.  W.,  at  the  Gubbat  il  Charab,  (the  Bay  of 
Tadjurra),  which  extends  itself  still  farther  inland,  in  a 
westerly  direction.  The  village  Ambabo  sprang  out  of  a 
feud  :  its  inhabitants  formerly  resided  at  Tadjurra  ;  but 
falling  out  with  the  rest  of  the  citizens,  they  reuioved 


to  AmbabOj  where  they  built  this  village.  Onr  guide 
stopped  behind  with  Ali  Arab,  saying,  that  he  would 
join  us  in  the  afternoon,  and  then  proceed  with  us  as 
far  as  DliHiil.  However,  when  he  came  up  with  Ali 
Arab,  about  five  o'clock  in  the  evening,  he  said  that  we 
w^ere  not  to  start  until  morning.  On  remonstrating 
with  him,  he  said  that  the  road  lay  along  the  coast,  and 
was  not  passable  this  evening,  on  account  of  the  rising 
flood;  in  consequence  of  which  w^e  were  obliged  to 
stop.  This  morning  we  rose  at  three  o'clock,  and, 
moving  at  a  quick  pace,  reached  Diilliil  at  half -past  five; 
and  half  an  hour  after,  made  Sukta.  As  we  met  no 
kafila  here,  we  went  on  to  Saggallo,  situated  half  an 
hour  S.  W.  from  Diilliil.  These  places  are  not  inha- 
bited, but  serve  merely  as  caravan  stations,  there  being 
water.  The  distance  from  Tadjurra  to  Saggallo  is 
about  five  hours. 

April  28,  1839  :  LorcVs  Day. — This  morning,  as  we 
were  about  to  proceed,  a  camel  was  said  to  be  lost,  and  we 
could  not  move  before  it  was  found  again :  for  the  same 
reason,  the  caravan  which  was  with  us  would  remain. 
Mahomed  Ali,  our  guide,  seems  determined  to  prolong 
our  journey,  as  he  is  anxious  to  spare  his  camels.  The 
beast  was,  however,  found  in  the  course  of  the  morning, 
and  we  were  to  proceed  in  the  afternoon.  Yesterdaj% 
the  thermometer  rose  to  94|° :  to-day,  at  eleven 
o'clock,  it  was  at  96|°.  This  region  is  very  sandy 
and  stony,  and  the  soil  overgrown  with  dwarfish 
mimosa  trees,  which  serve  to  lodge  many  of  the  fea- 


tliered  tribe^  particularly  sea-birds,  pigeons,  partridges, 
and  guinea-fowls ;  also  a  small  sort  of  gazelles,  in  Ara- 
bic called  Beni  Israel.  Besides  the  above-mentioned, 
the  hare  is  the  only  species  of  game  which  resorts  hither. 
There  are  not  many  wild  beasts  here  about :  the  lynx  is 
said  to  prey  upon  the  goat.  We  were  not  able  to  as- 
certain whether  the  leopard  is  found  in  the  mountains. 
During  our  excui'sions,  we  saw  a  jackal.  This  country 
is  by  no  means  deficient  in  water.  At  Tadjurra  there 
is  a  walled  cistern.  On  our  road  hither,  and  even 
here,  there  are  spots  where  the  traveller  has  but  to  dig 
a  hole  in  the  ground  to  get  water.  Its  quality  depends, 
of  course,  on  the  nature  of  the  soil.  Here  it  is  not  the 
best,  having  rather  an  unpleasant  taste  ;  which  is  made 
still  worse  by  a  certain  herb  which  they  put  into  their 
badly-prepared  skin-bags,  and  which  gives  the  water  a 
reddish  colour  and  a  bitter  taste. 

The  Dankali  peeple  of  this  region  have  many  pecu- 
liarities. They  are  of  the  same  race  as  the  Shohos,  and 
differ  from  them  but  little,  either  in  their  language  or 
physiognomy.  They  are,  however,  less  boisterous  in 
their  demeanour,  though  perhaps  more  shrewd  than 
the  Shohos.  One  peculiarity  in  their  conversation 
struck  us.  On  saluting  each  other,  or  talking  toge- 
ther, the  person  spoken  to  generally  repeats  every  sen- 
tence addressed  to  him,  or  at  least  the  last  word,  which 
they  usually  abbreviate,  sometimes  only  pronouncing 
the  last  syllable  ;  or  the  person  spoken  to  expresses  his 


attention  by  sympathetically  uttering  after  every  sen- 
tence the  protracted  sound  '  hmm/  They  are  bigoted 
Mahomedans ;  and,  in  general,  very  ignorant.  Even 
the  women,  while  grinding,  usually  chant  their  creed, 
"  La  illaha  ill'allah,"  &c.,  or  other  songs  of  the  same 
tenour.  Their  mills  are  much  like  those  on  board  the 
Arab  vessels.  The  women  do  not  live  much  more 
separate  from  the  male  sex  than  in  Abyssinia,  nor  is 
their  conduct  much  more  moral. 

April  29,  1839. — We  left  Saggallo  at  midnight,  and 
travelled  for  half  an  hour  along  the  sea-coast,  in  a  due 
west  direction;  then  turned  to  the  north-west,  ascended 
an  eminence,  passed  the  defile  Gall'  allifeo,  and,  after 
a  further  ascent,  the  station  Derkelle;  and  at  last 
reached  some  table-land,  called  Wardelissan.  From 
this  we  turned  westward,  till  we  arrived  at  a  spot  where 
a  few  low  mimosa  trees  were  growing,  and  here  alighted 
to  pass  the  night :  it  wanted  a  quarter  to  eight  when 
we  halted.  Estimating  the  distance  by  our  pace  during 
the  seven  hours  and  three  quarters'  ride,  we  may  have 
gone  over  a  track  of  seven  hours.  As  W'C  ascended,  we 
breathed  a  fresh  air  ;  but  on  reaching  the  table-land, 
although  the  sun  had  only  been  up  a  short  time,  it 
grew  hot,  the  heat  being  increased  by  a  south-east  wind. 
The  plain  was  covered  with  volcanic  stones. 

April  30. — This  morning  we  started  at  three  o'clock, 
and  descended  in  a  south-east  and  southern  direction, 
through  a  narrow  ravine,  called  Raisan,  which  was  very 
toilsome  for  the  camels  to  pass.     This  led  us  to  the 

SALT    LAKE   ASSAL.  21 

western  cud  of  tlie  Bay  of  Tadjurra,  which  here  termi- 
nates in  a  second  bay.  From  AVardeUssan  hither  we 
had  gone  over  a  track  of  about  an  hour-aud-a-half  ex- 
tent ;  which,  together  with  the  road  where  we  left  the 
sea-coast  to  WardeUssan,  makes  five  hours;  and  de- 
ducting the  windings,  the  distance  in  a  direct  hue  from 
the  spot  where  wc  left  the  shore  to  the  end  of  the  bay, 
is  probably  about  three  hours.  From  thence  we  as- 
cended again,  and  came  to  table  land ;  where  the  vol- 
canic appearance  was  still  more  evident,  in  the  burnt 
minerals,  ashes,  and  lava,  which  abounded  all  around. 
After  proceeding  another  hour  in  a  westerly  direction, 
we  saw  the  salt  lake  Assal  in  a  valley  before  us ;  and 
at  eight  o'clock  we  encamped  at  the  caravan  station, 
Daferri,  on  the  declivity  of  the  hill.  The  heat  soon 
became  intense :  at  noon  it  was  99",  half  an  hour 
later  100",  and  afterwards  rose  to  102". 

May  1 — Yesterday  our  caravan  was  induced, 
through  the  great  heat  and  want  of  water,  to  start  at 
three  in  the  afternoon ;  and  we  began  to  move  round 
the  lake.  Our  course  lay  south-west ;  but  owing  to 
the  ruggedness  of  the  ground,  wc  were  obliged  to  wind 
our  way  sometimes  in  almost  opposite  directions.  Wc 
crossed  the  valley  IMarmarisso,  where  the  caravans 
sometimes  encamp  :  then  came  to  an  eminence,  Muya ; 
whence  we  descended  a  steep  declivity,  and  reached  the 
valley  Muya  at  seven  o'clock,  having  made  about  two 
hours'  way ;  although,  in  a  straight  line,  the  distance 
from  Daferri  is  liardly  three-quarters  of  an  hour.   From 

22  SALT    LAKE   ASSAL. 

Muya  we  set  off  at  half-past  one  in  the  night,  and  first 
reached  a  rather  elevated  plain,  named  Halaksitan.  On 
account  of  the  ruggedness  of  the  ground,  full  of  chasms 
and  gulfs,  the  vestiges  of  volcanic  eruptions,  we  sought 
to  get  round  the  lake  Assal,  towards  the  south,  in  a 
semicircle.  To  effect  this,  we  had  to  round  some 
mountains  south  of  the  lake,  and  arrived  at  a  resting- 
place  at  its  southern  extremity  ;  but  as  there  was  no 
water,  the  caravan  thought  it  better  not  to  stop.  We 
now  descended  to  the  lake,  the  shores  of  which  are 
covered  with  a  thick  salt  crust,  which,  to  a  European, 
presents  the  appearance  of  ice.  Hither  many  caravans 
resort  for  salt,  to  carry  to  Abyssinia;  of  which  trade  the 
Danakils  make  a  monopoly,  claiming  the  right  to  take 
salt  from  hence  as  their  exclusive  privilege.  Formerly 
the  lake  must  have  been  situated  much  higher  up ;  for 
at  the  southern  and  western  ends  of  it  a  thick  crust  of 
white  and  grey  crystal  extends  along  the  coast,  which, 
close  to  the  lake,  has  a  saltish  taste,  the  taste  decreasing 
with  the  distance.  We  passed  over  this  salt  crust  from 
south  to  west :  it  rests  for  the  most  part  directly  on 
the  ground,  as  the  water  seems  to  have  sunk.  In  some 
parts,  however,  the  water  is  seen  beneath,  and  from  hence 
it  is  that  the  caravans  take  their  salt.  I  examined  the 
salt  incrustation  in  one  of  these  places,  and  found  it  to 
be  about  half  a  foot  thick.  The  lake  is  nearly  oval ; 
its  length,  from  north  to  south,  about  two  hours ;  and 
its  greatest  breadth,  from  east  to  west,  perhaps  one 
hour.     The  Danakils  believe  there  is  a  subterranean 


connexion  between  this  salt  lake  and  the  Bay  of  Tad- 
jiUTa,  from  which  it  is  about  two  hours^  distant,  in  a 
direct  line.  After  leaving  the  lake,  we  entered  a  dale 
toward  the  west,  which  ran  between  moderately  high 
mountains,  first  westward,  then  south-west,  and  at  ten 
o'clock  alighted  at  a  place  of  encampment  called  Gun- 
gunta,  where  there  is  water.  About  noon  the  heat  rose 
to  107%  and  now,  at  three  p.  m.,  it  is  106°. 

Maij  2, 1839. — This  morning  we  did  not  move  off  till 
sunrise,  half-past  five.  Our  road  lay  first  west,  then  south 
and  south-west,  through  the  valley  Kellu,  which,  by  its 
abundance  of  water  and  its  verdure,  strongly  brought 
to  our  mind  the  valley  of  Samhar ;  with  this  difference 
only,  that  the  mountains  of  Samhar  are  higher,  and 
bear  more  vegetation.  Toward  half  past  eight  we 
arrived  at  our  encamping  place,  Alluli,  after  having 
gone  over  a  distance  of  two  hours.  The  weather  to-day 
is  not  so  hot  as  yesterday,  although  the  wiud  was 
equally  so. 

Had,  this  evening,  a  conversation  with  Ali  Arab 
about  the  Dankali  tribes  between  Tadjurra  and  Shoa. 
The  chief  tribes  are  the  Debenik  We'ema,  Mudaitu,  Ad- 
AlH,  and  Burhanto  ;  to  which  latter  the  Sultan  of  Tad- 
jurra belongs,  and  Tadjurra,  the  tribe  of  the  present 
Vizier.  The  Debenik  We'ema,  and  Mudaitu,  appear 
to  be  the  more  numerous  ;  and  the  latter,  ])crhaps,  the 
more  powerful  of  the  Kabyles.  The  Mudaitus  have 
their  chief  residence  in  Aussa,  and  extend  as  far  nortli 
as  near  ]\Iassowah.     At    Aussa,    the    Sultan    has    his 


Nayb.  On  our  road  the  Mudaitus  begin  in  tbe  valley 
Kellii,  and  extend  as  far  as  the  district  of  Aussa.  At 
present^  they  are  at  peace  with  the  rest  of  the  Dauakils, 
although  disaffected,  especially  toward  the  Debenik 
We'emas,  with  whom  they  had  a  bloody  war  some  years 
ago.  On  that  occasion  the  We'emas  called  the  Bedouins 
of  Aden  to  their  assistance;  who  sent  them  400  sol- 
diers, and  with  these  they  conquered  the  Mudaitus. 
Afterward,  however,  they  became  indignant  at  the 
licentiousness  to  which  these  400  soldiers  abandoned 
themselves  after  their  victory,  and  endeavoured  to  re- 
move them  as  soon  as  possible.  "  Nevertheless,"  said 
Ali,  "the  people  of  Tadjiu-ra  were  not  prevented  from 
going  to  Shoa,  although  the  ]\Iudaitus  had  interrupted 
the  communication.  The  people  of  Tadjurra  went  to 
the  end  of  their  bay ;  from  thence  proceeded,  by  night, 
to  the  lake  of  Assal ;  there  collected  salt,  returned,  and 
then  made  their  way  to  Shoa  through  the  Somali  coun- 
try, close  by  Horror." 

Ali  gave  us  an  instance  of  the  Sultan  of  Tadjurra's 
weakness.  It  happened  that  he  wished  to  give  his 
nephew  a  wife  from  another  Kabyla,  who  had  a  settle- 
ment in  Tadjurra.  This  being  refused  by  the  Kabjda, 
the  Sultan  commanded  them  to  leave  Tadjurra :  how- 
ever, the  other  inhabitants  of  Tadjm'ra  encouraged  them 
to  remain.  Hereupon  they  sent  them  to  the  learned 
men  in  Arabia  and  the  Sheiks  at  Aussa,  for  their  deci- 
sion of  the  matter.  They  all  investigated  their  codes 
of  the  law,  and  found  that  the  Sultan   could   not  force 


the  Kabyla  to  do  as  he  wished.  Now  he  has  prohibited 
all  marriage  for  a  whole  year;  yetj  in  general,  the  Sul- 
tan seems  to  be  a  well-disposed  man.  This  we  con- 
clude, not  only  from  his  treatment  of  us,  but  also  from 
the  manner  of  his  procedure  concerning  a  ship  of  Diu, 
about  which  we  often  heard  at  Tadjurra.  Several  years 
ago,  this  ship,  with  a  considerable  cargo  on  board,  hap- 
pened to  get  into  the  Bay  of  Tadjurra,  having  lost  her 
course.  The  people  of  Tadjurra  helped  them  to  dis- 
charge their  cargo  into  a  small  vessel,  with  which  they 
sent  a  pilot  to  steer  her  to  Mocha;  and,  for  their 
trouble,  would  take  no  other  compensation  than  200 
bundles  of  rice  and  the  vessel,  out  of  which  the  Sultan 
has  constructed  a  house.  This,  indeed,  may  appear  an 
adequate  remuneration ;  but  the  restitution  of  all  the 
goods,  v/hich  it  was  in  his  ])Ower  to  have  kept  in  great 
part  for  himself,  is  a  very  commendable  action  in  a  Chief 
of  these  savage  tribes. 

Yesterday  evening,  some  merchants  of  the  caravan 
came  and  asked  me  whether  the  Indians  have  also  books. 
They  had  heard  this  from  our  people,  to  whom  we  had 
told  it ;  and,  wondering,  said  they  knew  very  well  that 
the  Jews,  the  Franks,  and  the  Kafers  in  Abyssinia, "i^  bad 
books,  but  thought  the  Indians  had  none.  I  told  them 
that  they  had  many  books,  otherwise  it  would  be  incon- 
ceivcable  how  they  could  be  so  learned  and  cultivated 
as  they  are ;  that  we  possessed  some  of  their  books,  but 

*  Here  I  rebuked  them  for  calling  the  Abyssinians,  or  the  Cliristian.s 
in  general,  Kafer;  a  name  wiiich  denotes  a  man  who  knows  nothing  about 
God,  or  denies  God,  or,  knowing  the  will  of  God,  does  not  act  accordingly. 



that  tliey  had  not  the  Word  of  God ;  that  what  they 
wrote  on  Divinity,  Rehgion,  and  Philosophy,  was  only 
the  result  of  their  own  thinking,  and  was  not  divinely 
revealed  to  them. 

May  3,  1839 — Early  this  morning,  at  three  o'clock, 
we  continued  our  course,  turning  westward ;  then,  for  a 
short   time,  north-west;  then  again  west  and  south- 
west, through  barren  dales,  till  we  emerged  into  a  vast 
plain,  called  Anderhadideba,  which  separates  two  ridges 
of  mountains.     The  soil  for  the  lirst  half-hom-'s  march 
over   this   plain   appeared   to  be  good,  but   produced 
nothing,  the  ground  being  broken  up  :  afterward,  how- 
e\-er,  it  was  fertile,  grown  over  with  shrubs,  especially 
the   Juniper.     We  met  with  some   goatherds   of  the 
Mudaitus,  and  saw  also  three  fine  roes,  which  we  at- 
tempted to  shoot,  but  in  vain.     Toward  seven  we  came 
to  an  open  spot,    called    Gagade,   where  the    shrubs 
recede  in    a  wide  circle.     This  being  an    encamping 
place,  we  here  reposed.     In  our  neighbourhood,  a  Mu- 
daitu,  with  his  wife  and  goats,  had  pitched    his  tent ; 
Avhich  was  very  low,  and  hedged  in  with  thorns,  accord- 
ing to  the  custom  of  the  country.     The  weather  is  very 
hot.     Between  eleven  and  this  time — a  quarter  before 
two — the  thermometer  has  varied  from  106°  to  109° : 
however,  the  wind  is  not  so  hot  as  it  was  yesterday  and 
the  preceding  days.      Toward  half-past  three,  111°:  a 
quarter  to  four,  107°. 

May  4 — Left  Gagade  at  half-past  one  this  morning. 
The  other  caravan  had  already  separated  from  us ;  one 


dinsion  to  go  to  Aussa ;  the  other,  as  Mahomed  AH 
said,  because  we  marched  too  fast.  Our  people  have 
abeady  been  prevented  for  several  days  from  riding  on 
the  camels,  for  which  we  are  very  sorry,  although  I 
myself  always  walk  on  foot,  for  want  of  a  mule.  Re- 
monstrances \\'ith  ^lahomed  Ali  avail  nothing  :  we  must 
submit,  especially  as  his  camels  are  so  very  weak.  We 
moved  at  fii'st  chiefly  west  till  we  arrived  at  the  resting- 
place,  Karautu,  where  the  way  to  Aussa  branches  off 
toward  the  west.  From  Karautu,  our  com-se  lay  south, 
between  mountains,  exhibiting  traces  of  volcanic  action, 
with  scarcely  any  vegetation.  Only  in  the  valleys  did  we 
see  gi'ass  and  brushwood ;  and  even  here  the  ground  is 
like\vise  covered  with  ashes.  Soon  after,  we  entered  a 
long  glen,  where  we  saw  many  date  trees,  of  which  not 
the  least  care  seems  to  be  taken.  The  Bedouins  cut  off 
the  summit  of  these  trees,  and  extract  the  juice,  which 
is  said  to  be  intoxicating.  At  eight  we  arrived  at  Da- 
libui,  a  Danakil  settlement,  where  we  rested.  In  the 
last  six  hours  and  a  half  we  had  not  made  above  three 
hours'  way.  Half  an  hour  before  noon,  the  thermo- 
meter was  at  97":  at  noon,  98° :  at  one  o'clock,  99 ' : 
and  remained  as  high  as  97°  at  five  p.m. 

A  chief  occupation  of  the  Danakils,  especially  of  the 
women,  more  particularly  when  they  travel,  is  the 
plaiting  of  mats  and  baskets,  for  salt  and  corn,  from  the 
branches  of  the  palm-tree.  The  women  seem  to  be 
industrious.  They  dress  in  a  veiy  slovenly  manner, 
and  frequently  wear  nothing  but  a  piece  of  cloth,  of  a 
C  2 


gi-ey,  h\\\e,  or  variegated  colour,  tied  round  their  hips, 
and  reacliing  down  to  the  knees,  sometimes  bound 
round  with  a  fancifully- wrought  leathern  belt.  Not- 
withstanding, they  are  vain,  and  fond  of  wearing  brace- 
lets and  foot- ornaments,  ear  and  nose-rings,  coral 
strings  on  their  necks,  &c. 

3fai/  5, 1839  :  Lord's  Day — We  started  at  three  this 
morning,  and  moved  in  a  south-west  direction^  through 
the  vale  of  Kurri,  till  we  reached  Saggadere,  and  thence 
to  Little  Marha,  where  we  arrived  at  seven,  having  passed 
over  a  space  of  about  two  hours  and  a  quarter,  in  three 
and  a  half.     Vs^&  had  fresh  trouble  with  our  two  people, 
because  they  could  not  ride,   and  were  unwell.     The 
heat  again  rather  oppressive  :  at  noon,  95" :  a  quarter  of 
an  hour  later,  97° :  half-past  twelve,  100" :  at  one,  102°. 
The  road  was  nearly  level,  hence  no   decrease  of  heat : 
very  little  vegetation.     It  appears  to  have  rained  some 
days  since,  but  the  ground  seems  to  have  absorbed  all 
the  moisture  ;  nevertheless,  water  is  not  totally  wanting. 
Our  victuals  begin  to  fail;  and  as  our  butter  is  all  gone, 
we  have  to  boil  our  rice  and  lentils — which  are  the  only 
provisions  left  us — in  water  and  salt.     However,  if  the 
Lord  be  our  Shepherd,  we  shall  not  want ;  and  He  will 
help   us    through  every   difficulty,  proceed  they  from 
whatever  quarter  they  may.     The  thermometer,   at  a 
quarter-past  two,  at  103|° :  a  few  minutes  later,  at  104°. 
May  6 — Yesterday,  at  a  quarter  to  four  p.m.,  we  left 
Little  Marha,  moved  along  the  valley  almost  westward, 
then  ascended  a  hill  of  about  300  feet   elevation,  very 

VALE    OF    RAMLDELT.  29 

stony ;  and  afterward  took  a  more  southern  direction, 
to  a  caravan  encaniping-spot  on  the  table-land,  which 
we  reached  at  a  quarter  to  seven  o'clock,  having  made 
a  way  of  about  one  hour  and  three-quarters,  in  three 
hours.  In  the  evening,  a  hot  wind  blew  :  the  ground 
beneath  us,  as  we  lay  stretched  upon  it,  glowed  almost 
like  an  oven. 

We  set  off  at  half-past  three  this  morning,  and 
marched  stumbling  over  the  stony  table-land,  till  we 
descended  and  passed  through  a  ravine,  and  neared  the 
caravan  station  Galamo,  where  we  found  a  few  Bedouin 
huts.  General  route,  south-west.  Passed  a  hill,  and 
came  into  another  Aalley,  where  we  should  have  reposed, 
had  we  not  been  encouraged  to  pursue  our  journey  by 
the  lowering  sky  protecting  us  from  the  burning  sun. 
From  Adaita  we  passed  through  a  grassy  plain,  in  which 
there  w^ere  roes  and  gazelles.  From  this  the  road 
soon  led  again  over  a  hill,  commanding  a  vast  pros- 
pect from  the  summit.  Farther  on,  we  entered  the 
vale  of  Ramudeli,  where  we  encamped.  We  arrived 
here  at  half-past  eight,  having  made  scarcely  three 
hours'  way  in  five  hours'  march.  The  sun  now  broke 
through  the  clouds,  and  away  went  the  freshness  of  the 
air.  We  lay  down  beneath  some  mimosa  trees,  and 
after  a  while  our  guide  sent  his  people  to  go  for  water ; 
but  they  returned  with  the  distressing  intelligence  that 
they  had  sought  for  it  in  vain.  We  had  taken  water 
in  our  bags  yesterday  afternoon  at  Marha,  but  it  was 
now  consumed,  and  our  guide  had  calculated  on  fnuling 


water  here.  The  heat  is  again  oppressive,  the  thermo- 
meter, being  now,  half-past  eleven,  at  102° :  the  same 
at  two  o'clock.  The  heat  here  is  increased  by  the  north- 
east wind  passing  over  the  scorched  hills.  "VVe  found 
water  at  last  in  this  vale,  for  which  the  Lord  be  praised  ! 

May  8,  1839 — We  left  Ramudeli  yesterday  morning 
at  half-past  three;  atfive  o'clock  reached  Abu  Yussufj  and 
toward  half-past  eight,  Gubaad.  Yesterday  afternoon, 
at  three  o'clock,  we  left  Gubaad,  passed  through  Sankal, 
and  a  spot  where  there  is  a  fountain  of  water,  and  ar- 
rived at  Arabdera  about  eight  in  the  evening.  It  was 
too  hot,  and  I  was  too  tired  to  write.  The  distance  be- 
tween Ramudeli  and  Gubaad  may  be  about  three  hours, 
and  nearly  the  same  between  Gubaad  and  Arabdera.  We 
left  Arabdera  this  morning  at  three.  It  is  situated  on 
a  vast  elevated  plain,  almost  completely  covered  with 
volcanic  stones.  Just  before  sunrise  we  came  to  a  wide 
low  plain,  where  we  saw  some  wild-asses  grazing,  which 
took  to  their  heels  at  our  approach.  At  ten  we  reached 
our  resting-place  Daueileka,  where  our  camel-drivers 
dressed  a  wild  ass  which  they  had  killed.  In  these 
seven  hours  we  have  made  about  four  hours'  way.  The 
German  hymn,  "  My  life  is  a  pilgrimage,"  is  becoming 
very  familiar  to  me  on  this  journey. 

May  9 — Yesterday  evening  our  people  seemed  to  be 
apprehensive  of  robbers.  They  stated  that  a  hostile 
Kabyla,  called  Galeila,  had  gone  far  away  from  this 
part  to  a  watering-place,  and  that  consequently  we  could 
not  proceed  thither ;  the  more  so,  as  the  friendly  We'ema 

MOUNT    MART.  31 

Dankali,  who  formerly  had  kept  them  under  restraint, 
had  removed  from  among  them.  This  morning  we 
started  at  sunrise,  a  quarter  before  six ;  and  after  a  short 
inarch  on  the  plain  west-ward,  ascended  a  pretty  high 
eminence,  called  Mari,  southward;  and  at  half-past 
ten  reached  our  eucamping-place  on  the  table-land. 
The  air  grew  more  and  more  pure  and  fresh  as  we  as- 
cended, and  I  felt  rather  refreshed  than  fatigued  when 
we  arrived  on  the  plain.  Thermometer  90"  at  half-past 
ten:  at  eleven,  93°:  half-past  twelve,  97°:  at  one  o'clock, 
98°.  Mahomed  Ali  says  he  has  received  news  that  his 
relations  have  left  Errer  for  want  of  rain,  and  have  re- 
moved towards  the  north. 

May  10 — Yesterday  afternoon,  at  twenty  minutes 
past  three,  we  set  out  from  our  encampment  on  Mount 
]\Iari,  and  descended  a  low  terrace ;  then  marched  on  a 
wide  undulating  high  plain,  over  loose  stones,  without 
a  vestige  of  a  path,  our  guides  at  a  great  distance  in 
front,  till,  after  sunset,  we  reached  a  declivity,  the 
descent  of  which  was  not  a  little  dangerous.  Several 
times  the  camels  could  hardly  move  forward,  terrified 
by  the  dismal  abyss  on  the  right ;  while  the  darkness  of 
the  night  rendered  the  path  under  our  feet  almost  un- 
discernible.  At  length  we  reached  an  eminence  at  the 
foot  of  the  mountain  on  its  western  side,  and  there 
halted,  on  a  stony  spot,  where  the  Bedouins  used  to 
enclose  their  herds  between  loose  walls,  to  keep  them 
from  beasts  of  prey;  although  there  was  no  fuel  to 
light  a  fire,  nor  water  to  drink.     This  morning,    we 


started  off  at  a  quarter  before  five.  When  the  moon  is 
in  the  wane,  we  have  in  general  observed  the  maxim  to 
rise  with  it,  and  prepare  our  breakfast,  and  then  to 
proceed  while  the  camels  are  loading.  We  descended 
the  remaining  declivity,  and  came  to  Ahull,  where  we 
found  four  or  five  hot  springs,  probably  sulphureous. 
Here  we  took  in  water.  After  a  stop  of  about  an  hour, 
we  prosecuted  our  com-se  through  a  large  plain,  extend- 
ing south-east  and  north-west :  our  route  lay  south- 
Avest  across  a  plain.  We  afterward  passed  over  a  little 
eminence  covered  with  volcanic  stones,  called  Lukki, 
which  is  nearly  flat  on  the  top,  as  are  most  mountains 
we  have  passed  on  this  journey.  After  half-past  nine 
we  arrived  at  a  tree,  beneath  which  we  reposed.  From 
this  spot  we  have  an  extensive  prospect  before  us  toward 
the  south-west  and  west :  the  country  is  nearly  level, 
with  the  exception  of  some  low  hills  in  the  vicinity, 
and  two  or  three  higher  ones  at  a  distance  in  the  west 
— the  mountains  of  Argobba,  and  perhaps  of  Shoa. 
Thermometer  now,  at  half-past  eleven,  at  97".  Left 
Lukki  at  three  p.m.,  and  ascended  the  plain,  which  was 
overgrown  with  grass,  in  a  south-western  direction. 
Mahomed  Ali  saw  a  hysena  on  the  road,  and  a  dark  grey 
snake  of  considerable  size.  We  marched  till  nearly 
seven  o'clock,  when  we  rested  on  a  level  spot  in  the 
plain  of  Killele. 

May  11 — We  started  at  one  in  the  night,  in  order 
to  make  a  good  journey  to-day ;  but  we  had  not  pro- 
ceeded far,  when  we  and  our  animals  got  into  the  mud. 

APPROACH   OF    A   IIY.EXA.  33 

The  rain  wliicli  fell  here  yesterday,  on  the  clayey  soilj 
has  changed  it  into  mud.  However,  as  we  turned  as 
far  as  practicable  to  the  west,  we  soon  reached  a  dry 
spot ;  and  thence  took  a  more  northern  course,  till 
we  met  with  a  new  difficulty,  and  lay  down  to  await 
day-break.  Toward  sunrise  we  noticed  several  herds 
of  cattle  in  the  valley,  and  a  relation  of  Mahomed 
Ali,  with  a  Soniah,  came  to  salute  him.  At  half-past 
seven  we  set  out  again,  first  north,  then  north-west,  then 
west,  and  passed  two  large  herds  of  fine  cattle.  Here 
we  drank  water  and  filled  our  leather  bags.  After 
another  hour's  march,  arrived  at  Barudega,  where  we 
rested  under  a  tree,  but  were  annoyed  by  insects.  By 
half-past  eleven  the  heat  rose  to  103" :  toward  one 
o'clock  a  shower  fell,  and  reduced  the  heat  to  95°. 

May  12:  Lord's  Day — Yesterday,  at  half-past  three 
P.M.,  we  left  Barudega,  and,  piu-suing  our  course  south- 
west through  the  plain,  drew  near  a  low  ridge  of  moun- 
tains, stretching  south-east  and  north-west.  Toward 
eight,  we  came  to  a  place  with  trees,  brush-wood,  and 
water,  where  we  halted  and  passed  the  night,  as  we 
could  not  now  reach  Gaiel,  the  village  of  INIahomed 
All's  uncle,  the  Chief  of  the  Debenik  "We'ema.  No 
sooner  had  we  laid  down,  than  Ernst  awoke  us,  and  in 
a  great  fright  took  up  a  sword  and  musket,  pointing  flt 
a  beast  of  prey  which  he  said  had  come  near  us,  and 
which  he  thought  was  a  lion.  As  it  immediately  began 
to  howl,  we  discovered  that  it  was  a  hyrcna.  "Warkieh 
now  kept  watch,  but  soon  feel  asleep.     ^)'hen  we  awoke 

c  5 


in  the  morning,  we  noticed  the  traces  of  two  hyfenas, 
which  had  crawled  about  our  camp  and  close  to  our 
beds.  Mahomed  Ali,  having  been  awakened  by  their 
noise,  had  chased  them  away  by  throwing  a  stone  at 
them  ; — a  new  evidence  this,  of  the  hand  of  God  guard- 
ing us  against  such  dangers,  and  the  presumption  of 
the  flesh  in  fancying  to  be  able  to  guard  itself. 

It  is  already  the  third  Lord's  Day  of  our  journey 
from  Tadjurra,  and  the  sixteenth  since  we  left  Cairo. 
To  us  it  is  indeed  a  great  privation  to  be  shut  out  from 
celebrating  it  in  communion  with  our  Brethren — wan- 
dering about  as  strangers  in  jNIesech,  and  our  souls 
often  longing  in  a  strange  country  for  the  courts  of  the 
Lord.  However,  we  are  pilgrims  for  Him,  and  are  per- 
suaded that  He  will  amply  compensate  us  for  our  actual 
privations.  "Would  that  our  present  conversation  were 
more  sanctified  !  We  shall  probably  stop  here  to-day  : 
either  the  people  of  the  village  are  unwilling  to  receive 
us,  or  our  guide  has  so  agreed  with  them,  that  they 
come  out  to  him,  instead  of  our  going  to  them.  We 
do  not  lose  much  by  not  being  among  them,  but  per- 
haps escape  their  curiosit}^,  and  thus  gain  more  quiet, 
which  we  desire,  on  the  Lord's  day. 

The  heat  threatens  to  become  excessive  again  to-day  ; 
about  half  an  hour  ago  the  thermometer  showed  93° ; 
and  now,  a  quarter-past  ten,  it  is  at  98°.  At  half-past 
one  it  rose  to  107°:  and  at  two  to  108°.  Mahomed 
All's  uncle,  to  whom  he  had  sent  a  few  days  since  for 
some  camels  to  assist  him,  had  been  out  to  meet  us,  with 


a  horse  or  mulcj  and  some  soldiers ;  but  as  lie  went  the 
right  road,  and  we  travelled  on  a  bye-way,  he  had 
missed  us.  Thermometer,  at  a  quai'ter-past  three  p.m., 

May  13, 1839 — Yesterday  evening,  after  long  vacilla- 
tions, Mahomed  Ali  at  length  resolved  to  go  into  the  vil- 
lage. We  started  at  about  half-past  five,  and  entered  the 
village,  which  was  only  a  quarter  of  an  hour's  distance 
from  our  camp,  and  seated  ourselves  in  front  of  the 
house  and  stable  of  the  Dankali  Chief,  the  uncle  of 
our  guide.  At  this  moment  we  are  thronged  by  men 
and  boys  of  this  country,  whom  curiosity  has  attracted 
to  see  us.  Thermometer,  at  a  quarter-past  seven, 
8,2° :    at  half-past  eight,  85°. 

The  name  Adaiel,  for  the  Dankali  people,  is  the 
Arabic  mode  of  calling  the  whole  by  a  part.  It  is  de- 
rived from  Ad  Alb,  one  of  the  Kabyles  of  the  Danakil, 
to  which  the  Sultan  of  Tadjurra  belongs.  The  chief 
seat  of  this  tribe  is  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Shoa;  but 
the  greater  part  is  dispersed  among  diiFerent  other 
tribes.  Formerly  it  was  probably  the  most  powerful 
of  any,  and  gave  the  name  to  the  whole  of  its  former 
dominion.  Apparently,  the  most  powerful  tribes  at 
present  are  the  Mudaitus  and  Debcnik  We'ema.  The 
former  have  their  chief  seat  in  Aussa,  and  sometimes 
get  in  collision  with  the  We'emas  and  the  rest  of  the 
Danakils.  They  are  seemingly  more  numerous  and 
powerful  than  any  other  Dankali  tribe.  The  name 
Dankali  is  Arabic  :  they  call  themselves  Affar.     Thcr- 


mometer,  at  half-past  ten,  98° :  a  quarter-past  eleven, 
105°:  at  noon,  1052°:  seven  minutes  after  one,  108^°:  a 
quarter  before  two,  109":  half-past  tvi'o,  110°:  at  three, 
106°.  For  the  last  few  days  we  have  generally  had 
several  w^hirlwinds  in  the  afternoon.  When  at  Lukki, 
we  observed  many  about  noon ;  it  then  rained  in  the 

7lfa^l4, 1839 — We  set  off  from  Gaiel,  and  ascended 
an  eminence  about  two  hours  from  Gaiel,  in  a  south-west 
direction.  Here  we  encamped  near  the  Avatering-place 
AHbekele,  where  the  herds  of  cattle  belonging  to  the 
Bedouins  of  this  region  assemble  to  drink.  Ther- 
mometer, a  quarter-past  two,  at  103° :  a  quarter  to 
three,  101|° :  then  101°,  as  a  thunder-storm  is  ap- 
proaching :  at  three,  99°. 

May  15 — We  did  not  leave  Alibekele,  as  IMahom- 
ed  Ali  sent  this  morning  for  his  father,  because 
there  is  plenty  of  water  here,  but  none  at  the  place 
of  his  residence.  The  trade  in  these  countries  is  car- 
ried on  by  barter.  What  they  call  Nile  stuff,  that  is 
to  say,  blue-dyed  bad  bafta,  and  grey  Indian  Kosh 
(linen),  are  given  as  money  for  larger  articles.  SLxteen 
native  yards  of  the  latter  are  required  for  a  dress  :  the 
former  is  used  by  the  women  to  cover  the  head.  For 
Kosh  we  bought  a  sheep  ;  for  Nile  stuff,  butter ;  and 
for  pepper  and  needles,  milk.  Thermometer,  at  a 
quarter-past  seven  a.m.,  at  87° :  ten  minutes  before 
eleven,  99" :  a  quarter-past  eleven,  1021" :  a  few 
minutes  after,  106°. 



Mmj  16— Every  night  we  are  visited  by  hysenas, 
wliicli  generally  venture  close  to  our  beds;  but  although 
we  have  kept  watch   several  times,  we  have  not  yet 
succeeded  in  killing  one.     Our  guide,   Mahomed  Ali, 
asserted  yesterday  evening,  that  leopards  never  inha- 
bit the  same  region  with  hysenas.     As  we  contended 
against  this,  he  related,  that,   in  his  travels,  he  once 
saw  a  leopard  with  a  sheep  in  his  jaws,  encounter  a 
hyana  :  the  leopard  fled  to  a  tree,   and  the   hysena, 
unable  to  follow  him,   kept  watch  beneath.     At  last, 
the  leopard,   seeing  the  people  coming  at   a  distance, 
came  down ;  when  the  hycena  fell  upon  him,  and  tore 
him    and    the    sheep  to  pieces,  which  were  found  by 
the  people   when  they  arrived  at  the  spot — the  hyrena 
ha\'iug  taken  to  flight   at  the  approach  of  men.     He 
assui-ed  us  that  hysenas  are  much  stronger  than  leo- 
pards ;  but  that  they  flee  from  man  :  whereas  leopards 
attack  man,  although  they  never  make  head  against  a 
hysena.        This    may  serve    to    confirm    a  fact  which 
the  Rev.  S.  Gobat  is  said  to  have  related  among  his 
friends,  as   an    instance    of   a   remarkable  deliverance 
when    he    slept  between    a    leopard    and    a   hyrena, 
Ijoth    at    a     short    distance     from    him  :    the    hyana 
having  restrained  the  fierceness  of  the  leopard  during 
the  whole  night.    In  the  morning,  he  said,  he  threw  a 
stone  at  the  hyaena,  whereupon  the  leopard  went  away 
of  his  own  accord. 

Regarding  the    Issa    Somals,  both    Mahomed  Ali 
and  Ali  iVrab  stated  that  they  are  malicious — that  they 


steal  and  murder.  Sometimes  two  or  three  of  them 
go  on  a  robbing  expedition^  and  providing  themselves 
with  victuals  for  several  months,  secrete  themselves  in 
ambush  along  the  road,  and  lurk  for  travellers  who  may 
happen  to  separate  themselves  from  the  caravan,  to  as- 
sail and  kill  them.  They  are  on  pretty  good  terms 
with  the  Debenik  We'emas ;  who,  however,  are  on  their 
guard  against  them.  They  serve  the  Alia  Gallas  as 
leaders  against  the  Danakils,  when  not  in  hostility  with 
each  other.  They  say  that  the  Alia  Gallas,  through 
the  midst  of  whom  we  have  to  travel  for  four  or  five 
days,  are  a  very  dangerous  people,*  Ali  related  that 
on  a  jom-ney  through  their  country,  their  caravan  hav- 
ing encamped,  with  theii*  arms  in  readiness,  and  while 
keeping  watch,  late  in  the  night  they  observed  a  single 
Galla  approaching  their  camp,  crawling  on  his  belly, 
and  in  the  act  of  raising  his  lance  to  kill  a  man  of 
the  caravan.  They  then  rose  to  seize  him;  but  he 
escaped. — Bows  and  poisoned  arrows  are  still  in  use 
among  the  Somals.  Fire-arms  are  yet  little  knowTi 
among  these  savages.  When  Brother  Krapf  fired  his 
pistol,  they  screamed,  and  stooped  down.  They  are 
bigoted  jNIahomedans.  Yesterday,  one  of  them  came  into 
our  tent  to  look  at  our  things.  As  he  was  prevented, 
he  pronounced  the  words,  "  La  illaha  ilFallah,"  which  I 
repeated  after  him.  He  continued,  "AVaMahomed  Russul 
Ullah,^^  repeating  it  several  times,  as  he  saw  that  I  did 

*  The  sequel  shows,  however,  that  this  was  not  the  case. 


not  say  it  after  him.  Then  I  said,  "  Wal  Messicli  ibn 
Allah."  Upon  this  he  rose,  and  went  out.  Mahom- 
ed Ali  several  times  expressed  his  surprise  that  the 
Ulemas  at  Cairo  had  not  persuaded  us  to  become  Ma- 
homedans.  The  principal  seat  of  their  learning  seems 
to  be  Aussa;  where  they  say  several  Ulemas  reside, 
whose  learning,  according  to  Ali  Arab,  is  as  the  sea. 
Thermometer,  at  six  in  the  morning,  78° :  at  eight, 
86" :  at  nine,  88°. 

Yesterday  we  were  again  permitted  to  experience 
that  the  Lord  was  with  us  in  His  Spirit  of  discipline, 
purifying  our  conversation  and  common  relationship. 
May  He  ever  rule  among  us,  and  never  withdraw  His 
grace  from  us  ! 

About  an  hour  ago,  ^lahomed  Ali's  father  arrived 
on  a  mule,  and  without  escort.  He  has  not  yet  been 
in  our  tent ;  but  has  sent  us  a  handful  of  coffee-seeds, 
with  the  message,  that  we  should  prepare  some  coffee, 
as  he  would  drink  it  with  us.  Thermometer,  at  a  quar- 
ter-past ten,  91 3° :  ten  minutes  past  eleven,  100° :  at 
noon,  the  sky  overcast,  98° :  at  one,  105i° :  after  ten 
minutes  more,  107°. 

May  1 7, 1839 — We  left  AUbekele  yesterday  afternoon 
at  three,  ascending  westward,  and  in  half-an-hour  were 
overtaken  by  a  shower.  After  stopping  till  it  was 
nearly  over,  we  made  our  way  with  difficulty  through 
the  mud.  Toward  seven  we  arrived  at  a  spot  called 
Adaito,  where  wc  passed  the  night.  As  my  coverlet 
was  quite  soaked  through,  I  had  to  make  the  best  of 


my  shirts  and  sheets  during  the  night.  The  father  of 
Mahomed  AH  brought  us  milk^  which  Mas  quite  a 
refreshment.  We  started  this  morning  about  seven. 
Our  course  lay  over  a  stony  plain  with  much  grass^  on 
which  we  saw  many  herds  and  singing  birds.  At  half- 
past  eight  we  reached  Hasnadera^  the  residence  of 
Sheik  Ali,  Mahomed  All's  father,  where  we  halted, 
l^liile  pitching  our  tent,  some  children  brought  ns 
grass  to  strcAv  beneath  it,  for  which  they  begged  coral. 
When  the  tent  was  erected,  a  bag  of  curdled  milk  was 
brought  to  us.  We  shall  stay  here  at  least  this  day  ; 
and  then  a  new  period  of  our  journey  will  probably 
begin  with  om*  new  guide.  The  Lord  be  praised,  who 
has  helped  us  thus  far  !  Though  not  without  troubles, 
yet  we  are  still  spared ;  though  not  without  sins  and 
temptations,  yet  with  obvious  proofs  of  His  continued 
favor  and  mercy  we  have  got  on  hitherto. 

On  the  road  this  morning,  I  stayed  alone  with  the 
Lord,  and  stood  before  Him,  like  Jacob  of  old  at  the 
ford  of  Jabbok,  and  He  blessed  me. 

Yesterday  evening  we  saw  the  mountains  of  Horror 
before  us,  toward  the  south-west,  covered  with  clouds. 
The  town  of  Horror  is  said  to  be  only  two  and  a  half 
days'  journey  distant  from  this.  We  are  already  in  the 
neighbourhood  of  the  Alia  Gallas  ;  who  have  expelled 
Sheik  Ali  Abe  from  Errer,  and  spread  themselves  as 
far  as  that  district.  Terrible  people  !  seeking  their 
honour  in  murder !  On  asking  our  guide  yesterday,  w^hy 
the  Gallas  kill  people,  whether  for  booty  or   otherwise. 


he  said,  "  Their  only  honour  and  riches  consist  in  the 
number  of  their  slain  enemies.  In  other  countries,  one 
inquires  after  the  wealth,  rank,  or  condition  of  a  per- 
son, in  order  to  honour  him ;  but  among  the  Gallas  one 
asks  only  how  many  men  he  has  butchered.^^  ^^  by 
should  we  withhold  the  Gospel  of  mercy  from  these 
wretched  slaves  of  Satan  ?  Within  two  days  more  we 
shall  reach  them ;  and  five  days  it  will  take  us  to  pass 
through  the  midst  of  them,  before  we  come  to  the 
Hawash.  Thermometer  this  morning,  at  half-past 
nine,  90° :  near  ten,  94°.  The  AVe'ema  Danakil  maintain 
about  ]00  Somal  bow- men,  who  have  been  taken  from 
various  Somal  tribes,  and  are  now  naturalized  among 
them  :  they  still  preserve,  however,  their  Somal  tongue, 
and  marry  among  themselves,  without  intermixing  with 
the  Danakils.  The  Danakils  regard  shooting  as  unlaw- 
ful, and  therefore  employ  the  Somals  in  it.  They  seem 
to  cany  on  bloody  wars  sometimes  among  themselves. 
The  same  is  also  said  of  the  Somals.  Thermometer,  at 
a  quarter-past  twelve,  104° :  a  quarter  to  one,  107° :  at 
two,  110.^°. 

May  18,  1839 — Yesterday  evening,  Mahomed  Ali 
endeavoured  to  procure  an  additional  camel;  saying,  that 
the  four  we  had  were  not  sufficient  as  we  should 
henceforward  travel  quicker.  This  morning,  at  half- 
past  six,  we  set  off  from  Little  Hasnadera,  and  con- 
tinuing our  course  south-west  over  the  plain,  which 
was  gradually  rising.  We  reached  Great  Hasnadera  at 
half-past  ten,  where  we  halted,  as  Mahomed  Ali  said 


that  we  were  to  pass  the  night  here.  Thermometer  at 
half-past  two,  106° ;  sky  overcast. 

May  19^  1839:  Lord's  Day — On  this  clay,  European 
Christians  commemorate  the  effusion  of  the  Holy 
Spirit,  and  the  Church  is  refreshed  here  and  there  by 
a  new  outpouring  of  the  same ;  while  we  here  at 
MuUu,  about  an  hour  and  a  half  west  from  Great 
Hasnadera,  om*  present  place  of  repose,  must  pitch  our 
tent  in  Kedar.  May  the  Lord  pour  also  upon  us  a 
shower  of  mercy,  and  revive  the  scorched  soil  of  our 
hearts  !  0  that  the  blessed  stream  from  the  heavenly 
altar  may  also  flow  to  this  dead  sea  of  nations,  and 
renew  them  ! 

Yesterday  evening,  at  ten  minutes  before  six,  we 
left  Great  Hasnadera ;  and  moving  westward,  over  very 
stony  gi'ound,  reached  j\Iullu,  where  Shiek  Ali  has  his 
chief  residence,  at  half-past  eight.  Mullu  is  nothing 
but  a  vast  plain  covered  with  stones,  with  here 
and  there  a  little  verdure  and  a  few  mimosa  trees, 
and  some  scattered  sprig  hovels.  A  cluster  of  such 
huts  form  something  like  a  village.  As  our  guide, 
Mahomed  Ali,  declared  he  would  stay  here  to-morrow, 
and  we  are  to  pursue  our  road,  we  are  wi-iting  Letters 
to  go  by  him.  Hitherto  I  have  travelled  on  foot ;  but 
as  a  mule  has  been  offered  me  to-day  by  the  old  man 
for  fifteen  dollars,  to  be  paid  for  hereafter,  I  have 
accepted  it  for  myself  and  Warkieh,  as  he  also  begins 
to  find  walking  difiicult. 



May  20 — This  mornings  IMaliomcd  Ali  consigned 
us  over  to  the  guidance  of  liis  father  for  the  succeed- 
ing part  of  our  journey ;  in  which  transaction,  which 
was  conducted  rather  formally,  Ali  Arab  acted  as  Tar- 
giman.  We  separated  as  friends.  The  way  before  us 
is  apparently  hazardous ;  not  only  on  account  of  the 
Gallas,   whose  northern  boundaries  we    shall  have  to 

44  TAKE  LEAVE    OF    MAH0:MED    ALL 

touch,  but  particularly  on  account  of  the  hostile  IMutlia- 
tuSj  along  whose  southern  border  our  route  lies.  On 
this  account,  Sheik  Ali  declared  he  would  take  an 
escort  of  his  people,  for  safety's  sake.  We  should 
have  set  out  this  morning ;  but  as  there  is  no 
water  at  the  next  stage,  water  was  sent  for,  to  load  a 
camel.  The  old  man  made  a  strange  remark  :  he  said, 
that  the  road  by  which  we  came  was  generally  destitute 
of  water ;  but  that,  on  account  of  our  object,  no  w^ant 
of  water  had  been  permitted  on  this  occasion. 
Thermometer,  at  half-past  eight  a.m.,  92° :  at  one  p.m., 
106" :  at  two,  103°. 

May  22,  1839 — Yesterday,  our  guide  left  us  :  to  him 
we  gave  letters  for  INIocha,  Cairo,  London,  Basle,  and 
Barmen.  We  left  Mullu  about  sunrise,  and  moving 
south-west  over  a  plain,  arrived,  at  half-past  nine,  at  a 
place  called  ^Vuderdera,  about  two  houi's  and  a  half 
distant  from  ]\Iullu.  Thence  we  set  out  at  about  half- 
past  three  p.m.,  and  jom'ueyed  south-west  till  eight, 
when  the  old  man  said  we  could  not  reach  the  water 
stage,  Korde'eti,  that  night.  This  morning,  half  an 
hour  after  we  started,  we  arrived  at  the  water  stage, 
Korde'eti,  where  we  took  in  a  supply,  and  also  watered 
the  animals.  Pi'oceeding  onward,  we  soon  reached  the 
village  Korde'eti,  and  alighted  after  we  had  passed  it. 
Before  us,  to  the  north-west,  we  saw  the  Baadu  and  Aialu 
mountains.  Those  of  Aialu  are  of  considerable  height. 
Ali  Ai-ab  stated,  that  on  some  part  of  these  mountains 
a  bloody  sku'mish  had  taken  place  last  year,  between 


the  Debcnik  We'emas  and  the  Mudiatus  ;  in  which  the 
latter  had  700  killed,  the  former  140.  IMahomed 
Ali's  statement  varied  in  the  number  :  he  said,  Mudai- 
tus  1500,  We'emas  120.  In  their  wars,  the  Debenik 
Vv'e'emas  always  make  common  cause  with  the  Issa 
Somals  against  the  Mudaitus,  in  which  event  the  Issa 
Somals  amount  to  one  third  of  their  number.  South- 
west of  us  is  the  Gcbel  Achmar,  or  the  Galla  moun- 
tains. The  land  between  us  and  that  mountain  is  an 
undulating  plain,  said  to  extend  from  the  banks  of 
the  Hawash  as  far  as  Berbera.  Thermometer,  at  one 
P.M.,  110". 

May  23 — We  remained  yesterday  at  Korde'eti,  it 
being  the  last  place  of  the  tribe  of  We'cma.  Here  we 
drank  milk,  and  our  new  guide  Sheik  Ali  engaged 
some  people  of  the  place  to  accompany  vis ;  because, 
he  said,  the  journey  before  us  was  very  dangerous,  Wc 
started  this  morning  about  a  quarter-past  five,  and 
descended  gradually,  in  a  south-west  direction  through 
the  valley,  till  half-past  nine ;  then  stopped  at  the  dry 
bed  of  a  small  brook  in  the  plain,  along  which  numer- 
ous mimosas  were  growing,  and  put  uj)  under  a  large 
tree  of  this  kind.  The  name  of  this  stage  is  Metta. 
Thermometer,  near  eleven,  98".  At  this  very  moment 
we  see,  at  about  a  quarter  of  an  hour^s  distance,  several 
whirling  columns  of  dust,  like  smoke ;  giving  the 
countrjf  the  appearance  of  a  manufacturing  town  with 
numerous  huge  steam-engines  at  work.  The  air  is 
very  hazy ;  and  there  is  a  mist  on  the  ground,  seeming 


to  cover  the  mountains  from  top  to  bottom.  Thermo- 
meter, at  half-past  twelve,  lOS- :  wind  north-east, 

Mmj  24, 1839— We  left  Metta  yesterday  at  half-past 
three  p.m.  ;  and  marching  almost  west  over  the  plain 
where  we  have  put  up,  passed  by  the  village  Metta, 
and  afterward  saw  herds  of  large  and  small  cattle. 
After  seven,  we  came  to  the  village  Kummi ;  and  about 
an  hour  later,  encamped  near  a  deserted  and  ruined 
village  of  the  Bedouins.  Although  we  were  in  want 
of  water,  and  the  watering-place,  as  the  people  said, 
was  yet  at  a  great  distance,  still  the  old  man  could  not 
be  induced  to  proceed.  Consequently,  we  lay  down  to 
rest,  and  set  off  this  morning  at  a  quarter-past  five ;  and, 
pursuing  our  course  over  the  same  plain,  west-south- 
west, saw  to  the  left,  at  a  little  distance.  Mount  Afrabat ; 
to  the  west  of  which  is  joined  the  small  mountain  Farsis  ; 
and  north-west  of  this  ]\Iount  Assabot ;  all  inhabited 
by  Ittoos.  To  the  right  we  saw  the  high  land  of  Shoa 
and  Efat.  The  plain  on  which  we  travelled  terminated 
in  a  dale  overgrown  with  grass  and  trees.  Here  we 
passed  a  village  inhabited  by  Dabanis,  and  gained  an 
eminence,  where  we  met  a  woman  and  her  child  riding 
on  a  camel,  laden  with  her  Bedouin  tent.  She  showed 
us  the  way  to  the  encamping  place  of  a  caravan,  M'hich 
was  awaiting  our  an-ival.  At  about  half-past  ten  we 
reached  this  stage,  situated  near  the  watering-place, 
Hamuissa,  from  which  this  whole  region  derives  its 
name;    and  here  we  found  the  caravan.       They  left 


TadjuiTa  on  the  day  of  our  arrival  there,  and  did  not 
arrive  here  till  yesterday  evening.  Our  people  had 
long  been  desiring  to  join  them;  and  therefore  sent 
word  to  them  yesterday,  in  consequence  of  which  they 
said  they  had  waited  for  us  to-day ;  otherwise,  they 
would  have  gone  on  before.  We  shall  now  most  likely 
travel  together  the  rest  of  our  journey :  oiu*  new  com- 
panions say  they  will  henceforward  travel  quicker  than 
they  have  done  hitherto.  This  region  abounds  with 
elephants,  which  come  in  great  numbers  to  the  water 
in  the  night,  and  suffer  no  man  to  approach  it.  The 
caravan  entreated  us  to  shoot  them ;  but  we  felt  no  in- 
clination to  do  so.  Thermometer  this  morning  at  five, 
69° :  during  the  afternoon,  105°.  Early  in  the  morn- 
ing it  is  very  cool :  the  warm  winds  generally  blow  till 
late  in  the  night. 

May  25, — We  started  this  morning  at  six,  and 
moved  nearly  due  west,  over  a  fine  plain  full  of  grass  and 
trees.  Since  yesterday,  we  have  noticed  a  large  fii-e  on 
this  plain,  which  is  not  yet  extinguished.  On  asking 
the  cause  of  it,  they  said,  that  it  came  of  itself.  At 
nine,  we  put  up  near  the  village  Mullu ;  which  is  called 
Little  Mullu,  to  distinguish  it  from  Great  Mullu.  This 
village  is  surrounded  by  very  high  grass,  reaching 
higher  than  the  head  of  a  man  on  horseback,  and  excel- 
ling in  luxuriance  the  finest  cornfields.  It  had  been 
agreed  upon,  that  we  should  repose  here  for  the  morn- 
ing, and  resume  our  journey  in  the  evening,  to  travel 
throughout  the  night,  in  order  to  reach  the  Hawash 


soon :  liowever,  on  arriving,  we  heard  that  we  were  to  pass 
the  night  here,  and  not  to  set  out  before  next  morning, 
as  the  caravan  was  in  fear  of  the  G alias.  They  alleged 
that  a  battle  was  soon  expected  to  take  place  between 
the  Danakils  and  the  Gallas ;  and  that  as  the  Gallas 
make  their  invasions  only  by  night,  they  chose  rather 
to  travel  during  the  day.  These  people  alter  their 
statements  so  many  times,  that  one  cannot  rely  on 
them  ;  and  by  being  so  apprehensive,  give  evidence  of 
the  truth,  that  he  who  does  not  know  and  serve  the 
True  God,  can  have  no  confidence  in  Jiis  ideal  God. 

To-day  we  happened  to  have  a  little  elephant-hunt- 
ing. Soon  after  we  had  encamped,  four  of  these  ani- 
mals, three  small  ones,  and  one  of  a  larger  size,  were 
seen  near  the  camp  imder  a  tree  in  the  grass.  The 
people  entreated  iis  for  a  long  time  to  shoot  at  them ; 
the  more  so,  as  they  were  afraid  of  their  causing  some 
damage  to  the  men  or  the  beasts.  We  observed  them 
for  some  time,  from  a  tree,  standing  and  swinging  their 
broad  flapping  ears,  and  tlirowing  up  dust  with  their 
trunks,  as  if  to  defy  us.  At  length,  Warkieh,  who  had 
been  engaged  at  other  times  in  elephant-hunting, 
grew  impatient,  took  a  gun,  and  went  toward  them, 
accompanied  by  Brother  Krapf  and  Ernst,  who  station- 
ed themselves  under  a  tree  at  a  certain  distance  from 
the  elephants.  Warkieh,  however,  was  the  only  one 
who  could  shoot,  as  the  grass  was  too  high  for  the 
others.  He  fired  twice  with  Brother  Krapf  s  double- 
barrelled  gun ;  and,  at  the  second  shot,  hit  the  larger 


elephant,  who  shook  himself.  U])on  this,  a  smaller 
one,  which  stood  under  another  tree,  took  to  his  heels ; 
and  then  all  fled  away. 

This  region  apparently  abounds  in  wild  beasts.  We 
bought  a  zebra-hide  for  live  needles  and  a  few  pepper- 
corns. The  zebra  was  said  to  have  been  killed  here- 
abouts ;  and  our  people  pretended  to  have  heard  the 
voice  of  one  last  night.  We  got  plenty  of  milk  to-day, 
for  needles,  pepper,  and  snuff.  The  people  were  par- 
ticularly eager  for  the  snuff.  All  day  we  are  surrounded 
by  people  :  their  conduct,  however,  is  not  at  all  extra- 
vagant. It  is  a  pity  that  we  cannot  declare  to  them 
the  tidings  of  the  Gospel.  Thermometer,  at  half-past 
four  P.M.,  102". 

May  26, 1839  :  Lord's  Day — To-day  we  have  again 
had  an  undesired-for  day  of  rest ;  as  the  caravan  whicli 
we  joined  the  day  before  yesterday  have  desired  our 
people  to  stay  here  till  they  obtain  some  camels,  for 
which  they  have  sent  to  a  neighbouring  village.  As  we 
objected  to  staying,  our  people  observed,  that  we  were 
under  some  obligation  to  the  caravan,  as  they  had  first 
waited  for  us,  in  order  that  we  might  travel  together 
through  this  dangerous  country ;  so  we  have  agreed 
to  wait  till  this  afternoon,  and  then  to  proceed,  should 
the  caravan  obtain  the  camels  or  not.  They  are  all  in 
gi'eat  fear;  because  yesterday  three  Mudaitus  wci'c 
here,  whom  they  apprehendcid  to  be  spies. 

The  German  hymn,  "  My  Saviour  receiveth  sinners," 
is  now  continually  upperaiost  in  mind;  and  it  is  particu- 



larly  consolatory  for  me  to  know  that  the  blood  of  Jesus 
Christ  cleanseth  me  from  all  my  innumerable  sins  which 
still  cleave  to  me.  To  whom  could  I  direct  myself,  in 
order  to  find  rest  and  safety,  if  this  blood  did  not  con- 
stantly  speak  better  thijigs  than  that  of  Abel  ?  The 
tvhole  head  is  sick,  and  the  ivhole  heart  faint.  Sancti- 
fication  advances  so  slowly,  that  it  seems  rather  to  re- 
trograde. Nevertheless,  the  Lord  has  called  me  to 
glorify  Him  before  the  world. 

The  constant  necessity  of  insisting  upon  the  fulfil- 
ment of  the  stipulated  agreements  with  om-  fellow-tra- 
vellers, in  order  to  prevent  unnecessary  delay,  gives 
much  nourishment  to  the  natm-al  man,  and  many  occa- 
sions for  the  excitement  of  unholy  passions.  This, 
however,  is  our  consolation,  that  the  Lord  is  ever  ready 
to  receive  us  back,  and  does  not  take  away  from  vis  His 
Holy  Spirit — the  spirit  of  faith,  of  power,  and  disci- 
pline.— Thermometer  yesterday  evening,  near  nine 
o^ clock,  73°:  this  morning,  after  sunrise,  66*.  The  night 
was  pretty  cool,  although  the  day  was  hot :  ten  minutes 
past  eleven,  104o,  Diseases  of  the  eyes  are  vei-y  com- 
mon in  this  country,  no  doubt  occasioned  principally 
by  the  dust,  with  Avhich  the  atmosphere  is  constantly 
tilled.  A  strong  whirl  of  dust  came  about  our  tent, 
and  overtm-ned  it,  just  after  we  had  left  it. 

Ma7/  27, 1839 — Yesterday,  at  three  p.m.,  we  left  Little 
Mullu,  and  journeyed  again  over  a  large  plain,  which  at 
first  we  found  covered  with  high  grass,  and  afterward 
with  scattered  bushes  :  the   soil  on  the  whole  appeared 


fertile.  Now  and  then  we  met  also  with  an  elephant. 
We  marched  till  half-past  eighty  and  passed  the  night 
at  Berduda — so  another  part  of  this  vast  plain  is  called. 
Here  several  Bedouins  had  set  up  their  huts,  but  most 
of  them  left  again  this  morning.  Some  Chiefs  of  another 
Dankali  tribe — Takil — came  to  us,  to  beg  tobacco. 
This,  as  it  appears,  induced  our  old  guide  Ali  to  hasten 
away  the  sooner.  Other  Dankali  tribes,  inhabiting  these 
regions,  are  the  following : — to  the  west  of  the  We'emas, 
the  Dabanis,  who  extend  very  far;  in  the  district  of  Ha- 
muissa,  the  Mashaikh  and  Hassoba,  among  whom  also 
the  Takils  live. 

We  left  Berduda  this  morning  at  half-past  five,  and 
crossed  the  other  part  of  the  plain,  Ilalakdiggi,  W^e 
saw  much  game,  especially  large  roes,  also  two  ostriches ; 
and,  a  little  before  nine,  arrived  at  a  place  called  Hanni, 
where  we  found  water  and  trees,  and  here  reposed. 
Our  people,  as  well  as  the  caravan  who  accompany  us, 
are  in  great  fear  of  an  attack,  and  urge  us  continually 
to  have  our  guns  in  readiness.  We  occasionally  tell 
them  of  the  necessity  of  a  higher  protection  ;  but  all 
men  have  not  faith  in  such  a  protection.  Our  journey 
is,  after  all,  very  tedious  and  trying.  Our  course,  at 
present,  is  almost  due  west.  The  night  again  cool. 
Thermometer,  at  half-past  twelve  p.m.,  100". 

May  28 — We  started  at  ten  minutes  ])ast  two  at 
night,  and  marching  westward,  over  a  barren  part  of  the 
plain,  soon  arrived  at  Great  Halakdiggi :  thence  we 
crossed  an  eminence,  shortly  after  sunrise,  from  which 

D  2 

52  RIVER   HAW  ASH. 

the  mountains  of  Shoa  clearly  presented  themselves  to 
our  view.  We  felt  our  hearts  tuned  to  praise  our  God, 
who  had  mercifully  guided  us  until  now,  and  brought  us 
so  near  to  the  close  of  our  perilous  journey.  From  this 
eminence  we  descended  into  the  low  country  of  Little 
Halakdiggi,  where  our  caravan  was  to  halt.  Sheik  Ali, 
however,  was  for  going  on ;  and  he  prevailed.  After 
passing  through  the  valley  of  Little  Halakdiggi,  we  as- 
cended a  hill  belonging  to  the  chain  of  mountains 
which  forms  the  eastern  skirt  of  the  valley  of  Hawash ; 
then  came  down  into  the  deep  and  wide  valley  of  the 
Hawash,  in  which  we  had  been  able  to  discern,  from  the 
eminence,  some  parts  of  the  course  of  this  river.  At 
the  foot  of  the  mountain  the  road  lay  through  a  forest 
of  mimosa  trees,  from  which  our  people  collected  a  good 
quantity  of  gum-arabic  ;  and  then  encamped  on  a  spot 
called  Debhille,  near  which  the  trees  on  one  side  of  the 
valley  are  hung  with  the  nests  of  small  birds,  some- 
times forty  to  fifty  on  one  tree. 

Mai/  29,  1839 — We  started  at  a  quarter-past  four 
this  morning,  and  pursuing  a  south-west  course  to  the 
Hawash,  reached  that  river  at  a  quarter-past  six,  by  a 
road  winding  through  a  fine  forest,  abounding  with 
plants  and  various  kinds  of  animals.  Numerous  herds 
of  elephants  apparently  reside  in  these  regions,  as  we 
often  found  the  fresh  traces  of  them  on  our  road.  We 
also  heard  the  braying  of  a  zebra,  and  the  noise  of  hip- 
popotami by  the  shores  of  the  Hawash;  but  saw  neither. 
In  crossing  the  Hawash,  I  saw  some  trees  crowded  with 

VISIT    TO    A    LAKE.  53 

baboons,  an  animal  I  had  not  seen  before  in  Abyssinia. 
We  crossed  the  Hawash  near  Melkukuyu.  Although 
this  is  the  dry  season,  yet  the  water  was  from  two  to 
four  feet  deep.  The  breadth  of  the  channel  is  about 
sixty  feet ;  and  the  heights  of  its  banks,  as  far  as  we 
could  judge,  averaged  fifteen  to  twenty  feet.  Both  sides 
are  covered  with  beautiful  forests  ;  the  breadth  of  which 
however,  in  this  part,  is  inconsiderable.  The  river  runs 
north  and  north-east.  We  could  not  ascertain  the 
situation  of  its  source.  The  shore  to  the  right  is  in- 
habited by  the  Alias,  Ittoos,  and  Mudaitus;  and  to 
the  left,  by  the  Danakils,  who  border  on  Shoa  eastward. 
From  this  part,  where  it  has  the  Argubbas  on  one  side, 
and  the  jMudaitus  on  the  other,  the  river  flows  as  far 
as  Aussa ;  and  there  collects  in  a  vast  plain,  probably 
because  the  land  ceases  to  decline,  and  forms  a  large 
lake,  the  waters  of  which  either  evaporate,  which  is 
more  probable,  or  escape  by  a  subterranean  outlet.  At 
this  place  the  water  is  said  to  be  putrid,  to  emit  an 
offensive  smell,  and  is  disagreeable  to  the  taste ;  but, 
on  digging  near  the  lake,  good  water  may  be  obtained. 
On  the  maps,  which  in  general  mark  oui-  road  incor- 
rectly, the  Ittoos,  among  other  errors,  arc  made  to  in- 
habit the  western,  instead  of  the  eastern  shore  of  the 
Hawash,  south  of  om'  route  :  farther  south,  the  Abarras 
adjoin  them  ;  and  still  farther,  the  Alias,  and  other 
Galla  tribes.  At  noon,  after  dinner,  we  went  to  see  a 
small  lake  west  of  the  Hawash,  which  is  about  ten 
miles  long  and  five  broad.     There  we  saw   as  many 

54  LAKE    LE   ADOO. 

as  a  hundi'ed  hippopotami  playing  in  the  water.  We 
fired  a  few  guns  at  them :  after  each  shot^  they  sud- 
denly plunged  into  the  water;  and  on  coming  up 
again,  they  blew  a  stream  of  water  out  of  their  nostrils, 
like  whales,  and  snorted  like  horses.  There  are  also 
many  crocodiles  in  this  lake — ^leviathan  and  behemoth 
dwelling  together.  Our  people  pierced  a  crocodile  nine 
feet  long,  which  lay  in  the  water  near  the  shore.  This 
region  is  very  prolific  for  a  natm'alist. 

May  31, 1839 — Yesterday  morning,  at  a  quarter-past 
four,  we  set  off  from  Melkukuyu,  and  marched  over  a 
hilly  track  near  a  small  lake,  the  waters  of  which  have  a 
disagreeable  taste  and  sulphureous  smell.  On  account  of 
its  remarkable  cleansing  quality,  our  people  had  washed 
their  clothes  very  clean  in  it  the  preceding  day  :  we 
could  not  bestow  on  it  a  closer  examination.  As  we 
proceeded,  we  first  met  with  a  few  hysenas,  then  a  zebra, 
but  all  beyond  the  reach  of  our  guns.  The  region 
through  which  we  have  come  is  called  Dofan.  After 
passing  through  several  forests  abounding  with  game, 
and  rendered  lively  by  the  warbling  notes  of  a  great 
variety  of  birds,  about  nine  we  reached  a  larger  lake, 
in  which  hippopotami  are  said  to  abound ;  but  we 
did  not  see  one.  Its  name  is  Le  Adoo  (far-distant 
water).  Thence  we  pursued  our  road  westward,  and 
alighted  about  eleven  at  Asseboti,  in  a  large  sandy 
plain  full  of  acacias.  Setting  out  again  at  half-past 
three  p.  m.,  we  left  the  caravan  behind,  and  encamped 
in  the  evening  at  Atkonti.    On  the  road  we  saw  several 


be'ezas,  a  fine  animal  of  the  size  of  a  cow,  and  shaped 
like  a  deer,  with  horns,  not  branching,  but  upright : 
their  flesh  is  exquisite.  This  region  resembles  a  cactus 
garden.  We  started  at  a  quarter-past  foui-  this  morn- 
ing ;  and  after  sunrise  entered  a  fine  valley  called  Ko- 
kai,  with  lofty  trees,  excellent  water,  abundance  of 
cattle,  and  a  great  variety  of  birds.  Mter  crossing 
several  hills,  the  prominences  of  the  highlands  of  Abys- 
sinia, which  extend  from  the  south  far  northward, 
about  eight  we  reached  the  fi-ontier  place,  Dinomali ; 
where  we  were  visited,  soon  after  our  arrival,  by  Soli- 
man  ]\Iussa,  the  collector  of  customs,  and  Abbagaz  INIa- 
homed,  the  governor  of  the  boundary,  who  came  to 
inspect  our  persons  and  baggage.  They  were  accom- 
panied by  Debtera  Tekla  Zion,  the  secretary  for  the 
salt-trade.  During  this  transaction,  the  Haji  Adam 
came,  the  same  man  whom  Brother  Krapf  had  seen 
last  year  in  Mocha  in  the  character  of  royal  mes- 
senger, saying  that  he  was  again  on  his  way  to 
Mocha,  and  had  a  Letter  and  a  female  slave  for  us :  he 
soon  brought  both.  Om-  conscience  did  not  allow 
us  to  accept  the  slave,  so  she  was  sent  back  to  Anko- 
bar.  The  Letter  was  directed  to  me  :  it  respected  the 
King's  and  my  owti  former  mission ;  expressed  the 
King's  desire  for  medicine,  a  gun,  masons,  &c.,  and,  if 
possible,  my  own  personal  arrival ;  and  contained,  at 
the  same  time,  the  promise,  that  all  my  wishes,  which  I 
should  present  to  the  King,  should  be  gratified  ;  but 
made   no    allusion    to    our    Missionary  labours.     This 


meeting  was  quite  providential,  but  connected  with  no 
small  difficulty  to  us  botli.  A  Letter  was  now  despatched 
to  the  King,  stating,  that  the  two  persons  to  whom  the 
message  of  the  Haji  Adam  was  directed,  had  arrived. 
Quarters  were  then  assigned  to  us  in  the  village  of 
Farri,  till  an  answer  should  arrive  from  the  King,  when 
we  might  pursue  om-  jommey. 

June  2, 1839 — To-day  we  set  off  fi'om  Farri,  and  began 
to  ascend  the  high  land  of  Shoa.  We  crossed  a  few 
promontories  and  valleys,  the  two  rivers  Hatshani  and 
J\Ielka  Jebdu,  and  reached  a  village  and  district  called 
AHu  Amba,  situated  on  a  steep  rock,  where  we  met  the 
first  Christian  Governor,  Yaunatu,  who  was  glad  to 
receive  us  as  Christians.  Here  we  were  obliged  to 
leave  our  companion  Warkieh  to  rest  a  little  till  he 
should  be  able  to  follow  us,  as  he  had  been  suffering 
for  several  days  from  great  pain  in  his  back. 

Ju7ie  3 — To-day  we  took  other  porters  and  asses  from 
this  place,  Aliu  Amba — our  jom*ney  from  Farri  being  at 
the  King's  expense — and  ascended  the  high  mountain, 
on  one  of  the  summits  of  which  Ankobar,  the  capital  of 
the  country,  is  situated.  We  crossed  over  a  ridge  of 
this  mountain,  which  commanded  an  extensive  view  on 
each  side  :  toward  the  east,  the  vast  plain  over  which 
we  had  come,  and  beyond  the  Hawash ;  and  toward 
the  west  Shoa,  to  a  great  distance.  We  went  round 
one  side  of  the  summit  on  which  Ankobar  lies,  and 
passed  through  a  part  of  the  town.  The  houses  are 
constructed  chiefly  of  wood,  with  thatched  roofs,  gene- 


rally  surrounded  by  a  garden,  and  disposed  around  the 
cone  in  a  spiral  form.     The  upper  part  of  the  town  is 
hedged  in  vriih  long  poles  connected  by  sprigs  as  by 
pallisades,  and  on  the  top  is  the  King's  house,  built  of 
stone  and  mortar,  with  a  thatched  roof.     The  situation, 
the  rich  vegetation,  in  a  cool  vernal,  or  almost  autum- 
nal, atmosphere,  pvit  us  in  an  extasy.     The  King  had 
given  orders  that  we  should   be   brought  quickly  to 
him,  and  as  he  was  at  Angollala,  a  day's  journey  from 
Ankobar,  we  could  not  remain.     We  passed  over  stony 
roads,  on  the  side  of  some  mountains,  and  crossed  an 
elevated  valley,  through  which  a  crystal  rivulet  purled 
which  set  in  motion  a  mill,  the  construction  of  which, 
had  been  begun  by  a  Greek  mason,  named  Demetrius, 
by   order  of  the    King,  but  was   not   yet  completed. 
We  breathed  alpine  air,  and  drank  alpine  water.     We 
then  ascended  another  high  mountain,  where  we  met 
with  many  alpine  plants,  and  camomile  and  pennyroyal 
densely  strewed  the  ground.     The  top  of  the  mountain 
was  covered  chiefly  with  barley  fields,  almost  ripe  for 
the  harvest.     We  put  up  at  a  poor  little  village,  called 
Metatit,  in  a  straw  hut,  or  rather  stable,  in  which  large 
and  small  cattle  lay  mixed  together  with  men,    and 
where  the  smoke  arising  from  the  burning  of  cow-dung 
and  cane  was  so  offensive,  that  only  the  cold  without 
compelled  me  to  sleep  in  it,  while  Brother  Krapf  and 
Ernst  crept  into  a  small  round  sheep-stall.     The  ther- 
mometer dm-ing  the  night  could  not  have  been  umch 
above  40^ 

D  5 


Ju7ie  7,  1839 — This  morning  we  left  Metatit^  and 
pursuing  our  road  westward,  over  undulating  table-land, 
halted  about  one  o'clock  p.  m.  in  a  raised  valley  near 
Islam  Amba,  where  the  King's  tent,  of  an  oblong  form, 
and  of  black  coarse  stuff,  was  already  pitched  to  re- 
ceive him,  who  was  expected  to  come  this  way,  and 
to  pass  the  night  here  on  his  jom-ney  from  Angollala 
to  Ankobar,  to  a  tescar  (anniversary)  of  the  death  of 
his  father,  Wussen  Segged,  who  died  twenty-eight 
years  ago.  AYe  were  not  long  encamped  before  we 
saw  a  train  of  horsemen  coming  down  the  mountain 
westward,  and  in  the  midst  of  them  the  King,  over 
whose  head  a  scarlet  canopy  was  carried.  He  had  no 
sooner  arrived  in  his  tent  than  he  sent  for  us.  We 
had  prepared  our  presents,  and  with  palpitating  hearts 
entered  his  tent,  where  he  sat  on  a  small  di^'an  covered 
with  silk,  and  received  us  mth  kindness.  Oui*  names 
were  already  kno^vn  among  his  people  ;  and  a  messen- 
ger whom  he  had  once  sent  with  Kiddam  Mariam  to 
Gondar  to  meet  us,  inquired  after  JMr.  Blumhardt.  I 
first  presented  to  him  the  Letter  of  Colonel  Camp- 
bell, which  I  had  translated  into  Amharic  on  board 
the  vessel :  he  perused  it  ^^"ith  attention.  We  then  de- 
livered oui'  presents,  among  which  the  beautiful  copy 
of  the  Amharic  New  Testament  and  Psalms  particu- 
larly pleased  him.  He  seemed  to  intimate,  however, 
that  he  would  have  preferred  ^thiopic  books  to  Anilia- 
ric.  He  asked  if  we  had  ^^Titten  and  bound  these 
books.     He  put  the  same  question  to  Mr.  Krapf  when 

WITH    THE    KING.  59 

he  presented  him  his  double-barrelled  gun.  We  rc- 
phed,  that  in  our  country  every  one  pm-sues  his  parti- 
cular profession,  and  that  our  vocation  was  exclusively 
the  preaching  of  the  Gospel,  in  which  capacity  we  were 
alone  sent  out  to  this  country ;  but  that  besides  this, 
we  wished  also  to  instruct  his  people  in  other  useful 
branches,  and  were  ready  to  assist  such  as  should  re- 
quire and  wish  it,  with  medical  aid  to  the  best  of  our 
knowledge.  We  m-ged,  however,  that  this  latter  was 
not  om'  object,  except  as  a  means  to  fui'ther  the  know- 
ledge of  Christ.  He  then  ordered  all  the  attendants  to 
depart,  and  explaining  to  us  his  bodily  ailments,  asked 
whether  we  could  relieve  him.  ^Ye  promised  gladly  to 
do  for  him  whatever  lay  in  our  power ;  but  added,  that 
the  result  did  not  so  much  depend  on  the  remedies  as 
on  the  blessing  of  God,  for  which  we  wovdd  pray.  He 
then  observed,  that  with  regard  to  our  principal  object, 
he  would  have  further  conversation  with  us  in  future, 
as  there  were  a  gi-eat  many  things  to  be  considered  re- 
lative to  this  subject ;  for  the  present,  he  wished  only 
to  see  and  salute  us,  and  was  very  glad  that  we  were 
here.  He  ordered  us  in  the  meanwhile  to  go  to  our 
tent  and  repose,  and  the  follo^nng  day  to  proceed  to 
Angollala,  where  he  would  see  us  again  immediately 
after  his  return  from  Ankobar.  We  were  gratified  with 
the  reception  we  met  with,  and  although  the  King  did 
not  for  the  present  enter  into  om*  principal  object,  wc 
have  sufficient  reason  to  thank  God.  He  commanded 
his  people  to  serve  us,  to  treat  iis  as  his  guests  and 


friends,  and  to  provide  us  with  every  thing  necessary. 
He  also  gave  us  a  servant,  who  had  strict  orders  to  keep 
off  from  us  all  importunate  people,  that  we  might  not 
be  annoyed  in  any  way. 

June  8,  1839 — This  morning,  very  early,  the  King 
started  with  his  suite  for  Ankobar,  and  we  proceeded  to 
Angollala,  where  we  arrived  at  two  p.m.  Not  long  after, 
the  King  came  back,  immediately  assigned  to  us  a 
dwelling,  and  sent  us  a  cow,  which  we  killed. 

June  9  :  Lord's  Day — Very  early  this  morning 
we  were  called  by  the  King,  who  asked  us  for  medi- 
cine. We  told  him,  that  our  particular  business  was 
to  teach  and  preach  the  Gospel,  and  that  we  were  no 
learned  physicians ;  but  that  if  he  desired,  we  would 
assist  him  with  medicine  according  to  the  best  of  om* 
knowledge.  At  the  same  time  we  took  the  opportunity 
to  request  him  to  give  us  a  number  of  boys,  in  order 
that  we  might  instruct  them  in  the  doctrines  of  the 
Bible,  and  in  other  useful  branches  of  knowledge.  He 
promised  to  comply  ■v\'ith  our  request.  We  thought  it 
as  well  to  make  this  application,  in  order  to  show  him, 
at  the  commencement  of  our  stay  in  his  country,  the 
good  intentions  we  have  for  the  welfare  of  his  people. 

June  10 — Very  early  in  the  morning  we  were  again 
called  by  the  King,  who  repeated  his  desire  for  medical 
assistance.  Om-  conversation  yesterday  ha\ing  turned 
to  geographical  subjects,  we  took  with  us  to-day  a  globe 
and  maps,  to  give  him  an  idea  of  Geography.  He  was 
pleased  with  all  that  we  explained  to  him  ;  but  at  last 


he  said,  that  he  was  too  old  to  study  such  subjects. 
\Mien  we  had  retired  to  our  lodging,  Beru,  the  favoui-ite 
boy  of  the  King,  came  to  us  and  said,  that  we  should 
not  give  medicine  to  anybody,  else  the  people  would 
come  and  molest  us  very  much. 

June  12 — This  afternoon  we  made  our  acquaintance 
with  Maretsh,  an  influential  Governor  of  the  tribe  of 
the  Abedtshoo  Gallas.  As  we  wdsh  to  become  acquaint- 
ed with  the  Galla  people,  we  were  glad  to  know  him. 
He  asked  for  medicine,  which  IMr.  Isenberg  promised 
to  give  him,  if  he  would  adhere  to  the  diet  which  he 
prescribed  to  him.  But  as  he  refused  to  do  this,  he 
did  not  receive  any  medicine.  The  tribe  of  Abedt- 
shoo has  its  seat  in  the  neighbom-hood  of  Angollala, 
from  which  place  it  is  separated  by  the  river  Tshatsha. 
In  the  house  of  Maretsh  we  met  with  several  boys, 
one  of  whom,  Wolda  Gabriel,  expressed  his  wish  to  come 
to  us  for  instruction.  We  asked  him  what  he  knew 
about  Jesus  Christ,  and  why  he  was  called  a  Christian. 
He  was  confused,  and  said,  "  I  do  not  know ;  but  I 
wish  to  be  instracted  by  you."  Mr.  Isenberg  then 
briefly  related  to  him  the  history  of  Christ.  This  boy 
came  several  times  afterward ;  but  at  last  he  excused 
himself,  saying,  that  he  had  business  in  the  service  of 
the  King,  and  left  ofi"  coming  for  instruction,  like  many 
others,  who  came  expecting  to  receive  medicine,  clothes, 
strings  of  silk,  which  they  use  in  sign  of  their  Chris- 
tian faith,  scissors,  knives,  needles,  &c.      Begging  is 


not  SO  frequent  in  Slioa  as  it  is  in  Tigre ;  but  in  gene- 
ral they  liave  the  same  character. 

We  have  had  several  interviews  with  the  King  the 
last  three  days.  He  wishes  to  make  use  of  us  as  phy- 
sicians, architects,  artists,  &c.  However,  we  told  him 
that  if  we  served  him  in  these  things  to  the  extent  of 
our  power,  which  was  veiy  limited,  we  shoidd  do  it 
only  for  the  sake  of  the  Lord  and  His  Gospel ;  and 
requested  him  to  give  us  an  opportunity  to  preach  the 
Gospel,  and  to  instruct  the  youth.  His  usual  reply  is, 
"  I  know  this,  and  shall  consult  with  you  about  it  by 
and  bye." 

June  13, 1839 — This  morning  we  met  with  the  King 
at  the  place  of  judgment.  He  was  sitting  on  an  elevated 
spot,  and  the  persons,  who  had  complaints  or  business 
were  standing  at  the  entrance  of  the  King's  house. 
Four  Judges  sit  to  hear  the  complaints  of  the  people, 
and  decide  upon  them.  If  their  decision  should  not 
please  the  King,  he  himself  decides.  In  giving  judg- 
ment, he  spends  several  days  every  week.  Ha\'ing  seen 
the  manner  in  which  the  King  gives  judgment,  we 
were  then  introduced  to  his  workmen.  Blacksmiths, 
weavers,  and  other  tradesmen  are  gathered  mthin  a 
large  place,  where  each  of  them  performs  the  piece  of 
work  assigned  to  him;  which,  having  finished,  he  is 
obliged  to  show  to  the  King,  who,  if  not  pleased  with  it, 
orders  him  to  improve  it.  Thus  the  King  could  in  a 
short  time  improve  the  state  of  arts  in  his  kingdom,  if 
he  had  a  few  skilful  tradesmen  from  Europe. 


June  l-i — 16 — Since  the  King  gave  orders  to  us  not 
to  give  away  medicine^  we  have  been  hke  prisoners,  not 
being  able  to  converse  with  any  one.  However,  we 
yield  to  these  circumstances,  if  the  King  will  only 
send  us  boys  to  instruct.  In  the  meantime,  we  are  not 
without  business.  I  am  occupied  with  iEthiopic  and 
Amharic  studies,  and  Mr.  Isenberg  is  writing  about 
Geography.  Several  days  ago,  the  Alaca  (director)  of 
the  Chm-ch  of  INIedhanalim  at  Ankobar  was  sent  by 
the  King,  to  study  our  language.  Mr.  Isenberg  began 
to  instruct  him ;  but  after  several  lessons,  he  expressed 
his  wish  to  be  taught  Geography.  We  had  rather  in- 
troduce to  him  biblical  studies ;  but  his  mind  is  still 
not  di-awn  to  the  great  subjects  of  the  Holy  Scrip- 
tures. The  name  of  this  Alaca  is  Wolda  Serat.  It  is 
remarkable,  that  we  should  have  at  first  to  do  with  an 
iUaca  of  a  jNIedhanalim  Church.  At  Adowah,  the  Alaca 
of  Medhanalim,  was  the  man  who  endeavoured  to  ex- 
pel us  from  the  country ;  and  in  Shoa,  an  Alaca  of 
Medhanalim  is  our  first  scholar.  Geography,  it  is  true, 
is  not  enough  to  enlighten  the  Abyssinian  people  ;  but 
we  must  act  as  circumstances  require.  If  we  cannot 
preach  the  Gospel  in  a  direct  way,  wc  must  do  it  in- 
directly. To  the  various  branches  of  knowledge.  Scrip- 
ture truth  may  in  many  ways  be  legitimately  connected. 
All  is  ours,  if  we  are  Christ's,  who  will  in  His  own 
time  open  a  way  for  freely  preaching  His  word. 

June   17 — This   morning,    Beru,    the    King's    boy, 
came,  asking  us,  in  the  name  of  his  master,  whether 


we  understood  liow  to  prepare  sugar  and  brandy. 
We  answered  as  on  a  former  occasion,  and  repeated 
our  request  to  receive  boys  for  the  pui'pose  of  in- 
structing them;  and  that  we  would  then  serve  the 
King  as  far  as  we  could.  Bern  went  away ;  but  re- 
turned immediately  to  fetch  our  kitchen-vessels,  which 
the  King  wished  to  see.  At  the  same  time,  he  longed 
for  a  European  dish,  and  begged  us  to  wTite  down  as 
far  as  we  knew  how  to  prepare  one.  Having  answered 
that  we  could  not  meddle  with  such  matters,  we  re- 
quested our  servant  to  serve  the  King  in  this  respect. 
He  was  immediately  called  to  prepare  a  dinner.  The 
King  is  anxious  to  get  from  Europeans  all  that  he 
sees  and  hears.  It  is,  however,  to  be  regretted,  that 
he  only  endeavom's  to  consult  his  own  personal  ad- 
vantage and  comfort,  without  reflecting  upon  the  wel- 
fare of  his  people.  Well  qualified  mechanics  of  all 
kinds  are  well  received  by  the  King;  but  they  dare 
not  expect  European  wages.  They  receive  their  daily 
maintenance,  but  that  is  all.  I  am  sure  that  skilful 
artisans  who  are  real  Christians,  would  render  great 
services  to  our  Mission.  How  much  the  King  seeks 
after  his  own  interest,  the  following  instances  will 
prove.  No  man  in  Shoa,  except  the  King,  is  allowed 
to  prepare  the  Abyssinian  hydromel,  which  is  called 
Zatsli — prepared  from  water,  honey,  and  a  plant, 
named  zadoa.  Fm'thermore,  an  Albanese,  whose 
name  is  Johanes,  who  was  formerly  a  Mahomedan,  and 
turned  a  Christian  in  Shoa,  built  a  bridge    over  the 


king's  selfishness.  65 

river  Beresa ;  but  nobody^  except  the  King,  is  allowed 
to  pass  over  it,  even  at  the  rainy  season.  This 
year  fom*  persons  have  been  drowoied  in  the  river. 
Farther,  he  levies  high  customs  upon  goods.  From 
ten  pieces  of  salt,  he  takes  one ;  from  ten  dollars, 
one  is  paid  to  him.  By  these  measm-es  commerce 
is  stopped.  Demetrius,  a  Greek,  built  a  mill ;  but 
nobody  can  use  it.  These  are  only  a  few  instances 
among  many  others  which  might  be  mentioned.  But 
it  is  to  be  hoped,  that  the  King  will  discontinue 
such  measures,  when  he  has  become  more  acquainted 
with  Em'opeans.  At  present  he  is  too  narrow-minded, 
follo-snng  the  principles  of  all  other  rulers  of  Abyssinia. 
In  some  respects,  he  is  inferior  to  them ;  attacking,  for 
instance,  a  Galla  tribe  without  sufficient  reasons,  taking 
their  property,  and  selling  the  captives  as  slaves  to  Tad- 
jm*ra.  He  repeats  this  cruel  custom  every  year,  when 
the  rainy  season  is  over.  In  this  manner  he  has  en- 
larged his  dominions.  The  country  which  he  has  taken 
in  war,  is  said  to  be  thirty  times  greater  than  Shoa 

To-day  I  sent  the  Amharic  Spelling  Book  to  the 
King,  which  I  had  finished  yesterday.  The  King  wishes 
for  many  things  from  us  :  he  seems  only  disposed  to 
decUne  accepting  the  one  thing  needful.  As  he  in- 
tends to  set  out  after  to-morrow  on  an  expedition,  we 
have  urged  him  to  give  us  previously  a  decision,  as  to 
how  far  he  would  assist  us  in  our  work,  and  to  give  us 
four  or  six  bovs  for  instruction. 


June  18,  1839 — To-day  is  a  festival  of  the  Abys- 
sinians,  that  of  St.  Michael.  On  this  clay  the  King 
gives  clothes  to  his  slaves,  who  are  several  hundi'eds 
in  number.  IVIany  persons  came  before  our  house, 
begging  for  clothes.  We  offered  them  bread,  which 
they  refused  to  accept :  others  begged  for  medicine. 

June  19 — On  learning  that  the  King  is  about  to  leave 
Angollala,  we  repeated  our  request  for  boys  to  instruct 
them.  He  sent  word,  that  he  would  send  them  from 
the  city  he  intended  to  build  in  the  tribe  of  the  Abed- 
tshoo.  Bekoo,  the  Governor  of  the  Galla  tribe,  called 
Adai,  applied  for  medicine,  being  tormented,  as  he  ima- 
gined, by  a  bad  genius.  Mr.  Isenberg  bled  him,  after 
which  he  felt  better ;  but  he  soon  fell  back  into  his 
former  state,  which  increased  so  much,  that  his  people 
were  compelled  to  tie  him. 

June  20 — This  morning  the  King  set  out  to  build 
a  city.  We  took  leave  of  him  on  the  road.  Observing 
us,  he  stood  still  a  moment,  and  said,  "  How  do  you 
do  ?  "  We  praise  God  that  He  has  disposed  the  heart 
of  the  King  toward  us.  Before  he  left  Angollala,  he 
sent  his  boy  several  times,  who  said,  that  the  King  con- 
sidered us  as  his  relations  :  yea,  as  brethren  ;  and  that, 
henceforth,  we  should  make  him  acquainted  with  all  our 
requests,  and  he  would  attend  to  them.  Knowing  the 
expressions  of  the  Abyssinians,  we  do  not  lay  too  much 
stress  upon  them ;  however,  we  see  his  good  feelings 
toward  us.  He  has  sent  to  us  from  time  to  time,  a 
sheep,  or  a  cow,  or  something  else.  As  all  the  people  of 


the  King  are  obliged  to  go  wdtli  liim,  several  boys,  with 
whom  I  had  begun  to  read  the  Gospel  of  St.  INIatthew, 
have  left  our  instruction.  Knowing  how  little  can  be 
done  in  instraction,  if  boys  are  not  continually  with  us, 
we  lu'ged  the  King  many  times  to  send  boys  with  whom 
we  could  begin  a  regular  course.  The  Alaca  Wolda 
Serat  comes  every  day,  being  much  pleased  with  Geo- 
graphy. He  is  possessed  of  a  good  memory,  and  of 
much  understanding  ;  but  his  heart  is  still  far  from  the 
truth  of  the  Gospel. 

June  21 — To-day  it  rained  for  the  first  time  since 
our  arrival  in  Shoa.  Strong  whirls  of  dust  had  pre- 
dicted its  approach.  We  learned  to-day,  that  the  King 
is  building  a  city,  which  he  intends  to  call  "■  Salaish.^^ 
When  he  builds  a  new  city,  he  causes  a  long  trench  to 
be  dug  around  the  place  where  he  mshes  to  build ;  then 
constructs  a  wall,  builds  several  houses  of  wood,  and 
delivers  the  city  to  a  new  governor,  having  with  him  a 
number  of  soldiers.  In  this  manner,  the  King  intends 
to  secui'e  his  frontiers  against  the  inroads  of  the  Gallas. 
Thus  Angollala  itself  has  arisen.  New  settlers  arrive, 
a  church  is  built  by  the  King,  and  a  large  village  is 
seen  in  a  short  time. 

June  22 — This  day  is  the  feast  of  Kidan  Meherat. 
Several  learned  Abyssinians  say,  that  God  appeared  in 
paradise  before  iVIary,  and  made  a  covenant  with  her, 
in  consequence  of  which  she  should  redeem  the  world. 
Others  say,  that  Christ  made  this  covenant  with  His 
mother,  in  the  month  of  Februaiy,  during  the  time  of 


sixteen  days.  How  little  do  this  people  know  of  the 
real  covenant  of  grace,  which  God  has  made  from  the 
beginning  with  mankind  to  bless  it  in  Christ ! 

June  24,  1839 — This  morning  I  i-equested  my  mule 
from  Ayto  Melkoo,  the  master  of  the  horse ;  to  whose 
care  the  King  had  committed  our  mules.  He  refused 
to  send  it  however,  without  having  a  special  order  from 
the  King.  Thus  we  are  not  masters  of  our  property. 
Every  thing,  even  the  most  trifling,  is  subject  to  the 
will  of  the  King.  A  cup  of  wmo.  cannot  be  given  to  a 
foreigner  without  his  command.  He  has  at  present 
about  two  hundi'ed  persons,  who  receive  their  daily 
maintenance  from  him.  The  daily  maintenance  is  called 

June  26 — The  Alaca  Wolda  Serat  told  us  this  morn- 
ing, that  the  Abyssinians  are  of  opinion,  that  St.  Mat- 
thew \^Tote  his  Gospel  in  Hebrew,  St.  Mark  in  Latin, 
and  St.  Luke  and  St.  John  in  Greek.  He  then  asked, 
whether  we  believed  that  Adam  was  seven  years  in  the 
garden  of  Eden.  We  replied,  that  we  did  not  know, 
as  the  Scriptm'es  say  nothing  about  it ;  and  that  we  did 
not  acknowledge  their  book  Senafehat,  on  which  that 
opinion  rests,  as  divinely  inspired.  AYe  took  this  op- 
portunity of  showing  the  great  difference  there  is  be- 
tween the  Word  of  God,  and  that  of  men ;  and  how 
dangerous  it  is  to  mix  both  together.  Our  confession 
that  we  did  not  know,  and  that  we  are  in  these  things 
not  so  wdse  as  the  Abyssinians,  who  have  another  Bible 
than  we  have,  confused  him  very  much.    When  he  went 

ON   FASTING.  69 

away,  a  priest  of  Biilga  called  upon  us,  asking  imme- 
diately— as  most  Abyssinians  do — about  fasting.     We 
told  him,  that  we  did  not  forbid  fasting,  if  a  man  felt 
himself  disposed  so  to  do ;   that  we  declared  it  a  great 
sin,  if  a  man  sought  for  his  righteousness  by  fasting, 
as  our  justification  comes  only  from  the  merit  of  Christ, 
which  we  apprehend  by  faith,  resigning  all  our  ot\^i 
work  ;  and  that  if  we  seek  our  justification  before  God 
by  fasting  and  other  exercises,  Christ  would  not  then 
be  our  complete  SaAaom*.     The  priest  answered,  "  But 
Christ  fasted  j  therefore  we  must  do  the  same."    I  said, 
that  Christ's  fasting  was  meritorious ;  that  He  did  not 
command  that  we  in  all  things   should  do  the  same, 
else  we  should  also  be  obliged  to  die  on  the  cross  as 
he  had  done.     We  cannot  follow  Him  in  all  that  He 
did;  because  He  acted,  in  many  cases,  as  oiu-  Mediator ; 
and  that  what  He  did  as  such,  we  have  only  to  accept 
with  a  real  faith,  and  to  praise  Him  for  the  same.     He 
requires,  that  we  mourn  for  our  sins, — that  we  seek 
His  grace  and  the  Holy  Spirit, — that  we  flee  from  all 
sin,  and  hate  all  sinful  thoughts,  words,  and  works ; 
because  these  have  caused  numberless  pains  to  Him  in 
His  meritorious  fasting  for  us.     Furthermore,  Christ 
does  not  require  that  we  should  die  on  the  cross,  but 
that  we  should  die  to  the  sin  which  is  in  om-  hearts. 
This  is  the  real  fast  and  the  death  which  He  requires 
from  eveiy  behever  in   Him.     ^Ye  then  explained  to 
him  Matthew  ix.  14 — 18.,  which  we  usually  do,  if  the 
matter  is  about  fasting,  remarking,  that  a  real  believer 


does  not  follow  the  pharisees^  who  fasted  in  order  to 
be  justified ;  but  that  he  followed  Christ  and  His 
disciples — that  Christ,  the  heavenly  bridegroom,  is  in 
the  hearts  of  believers,  and  always  with  them — that 
they  look  upon  His  merits,  and  know  what  He  has  done 
for  them,  and  therefore  they  cannot  mom-n ;  but  that  if 
they  mourn  for  their  weakness  and  sinfulness,  they 
know  that  they  have  an  advocate  ivith  the  Father,  Jesus 
Christ  the  righteous.  If  they  mom-n  that  they  do  not  feel 
the  presence  of  their  master — as  the  Apostles  mom-ned 
when  their  master  was  given  into  the  hands  of  sinners 
— they  know  that  He  will  come  again  and  say  to  them, 
Peace  he  ivith  you.  "WTien  Christ  w^ent  to  heaven,  it 
did  not  follow  that  He  is  not  now  wdth  us,  and  therefore 
that  we  should  fast,  as  the  Abyssinians  endeavom*  to 
prove  by  the  above-mentioned  passage ;  and  that  Christ 
is  not  far  from  us,  but  He  is  in  om*  hearts,  if  we  accept 
Him  in  faith.  But  the  Abyssinians,  who  have  not  Christ 
by  faith,  mourn  as  if  He  were  far  off,  crucifying 
their  flesh,  not  knowing  the  joy  and  peace  of  Christ ; 
and  as  if,  by  the  mortification  of  their  flesh,  they  would 
produce  their  reconciliation  wdth  God,  which  Christ  had 
fully  effected ;  that  the  Abyssinians  connect  then*  own 
righteousness  with  that  of  Christ,  vmite  Christ  with 
Moses,  grace  mth  the  law,  and  the  Spirit  \nth  the  flesh ; 
and  that  they  are  like  those  who  put  new  wine  into  old 
bottles,  and  new  cloth  on  an  old  garment,  where  the 
rent  is  made  worse ;  as  we  see  with  the  Abyssinians, 
who,  though  they  mortify  then-  flesh  by  fasting,   are 


living  in  all  the  sins  of  the  flesh — in  all  fornication  and 

June  27,  1839— This  day  it  rained  very  much.  I 
felt  my  heart  in  a  confused  state,  and  longed  for  the 
grace  of  heavenly  rain. 

June  28 — I  asked  the  Alaca  Wolda  Serat  about  the 
country  of  Sidama,  mentioned  by  Mr.  Gobat  in  his 
Jom-nal.  He  told  me,  that  he  did  not  know  any  thing 
about  that  country;  but  that  he  thought  it  was  Segama, 
from  which  country  many  slaves  are  brought  to  Shoa. 
He  then  asked  about  om-  chronology.  I  told  him  that 
we  count  4004-  years  before  Christ.  The  Abyssinians, 
he  said,  count  5500  years  before  Christ,  which  they 
prove  from  Luke  i.  26,  And,  in  the  sixth  month,  the 
angel  Gabriel  was  sent  from  God  unto  Mary.  I  said, 
that  I  did  not  wonder  at  such  an  opinion,  as  the  Abys- 
sinians had  not  a  sound  exposition  of  Scriptm-e  to  rely 
upon,  as  they  either  followed  human  books,  or  wTcsted 
the  sense  of  the  passages  of  the  Bible.  I  then  referred 
him  to  the  genealogy  in  Genesis  v. 

June  30  :  Lord's  Day — I  went  this  morning  to  the 
church.  We  think  it  necessary  to  go  often,  partly  that 
they  may  not  accuse  us  as  despisers  of  their  chiu'ch ; 
partly  to  become  acquainted  with  the  people  and  priests; 
and  partly  that  we  may  become  well  acquainted  with 
the  manner  of  their  worship.  On  coming  to  the  door 
of  the  church,  I  was  obliged  to  pull  off  my  shoes. 
Having  entered  the  church,  I  was  requested  to  sit  at 
the  side  of  the  Alaca,   and  received  a  long  stick,  which 


the  priests  cany  with  them,  and  on  which  they  lean  in 
church.  All  that  they  do  in  chm-ch,  is  to  make  a  ter- 
rible bawling,  which  they  call  singing.  Their  hymns 
are  contained  in  a  book  called  Degua,  which  book  is 
composed  by  an  ancient  teacher  of  their  church,  whose 
name  is  Fared,  from  Samien.  In  singing,  they  frisk 
and  dance,  beat  together  with  their  sticks,  then  with 
cymbals  and  di'ums.  Their  bawling  is  interrupted  by 
reading  a  portion  of  Scripture.  In  fact,  the  whole 
seems  to  be  rather  a  play  than  worship. 

July  1,  1839 — Very  early  this  morning,  I  heard  a 
loud  cry  in  the  neighbourhood  of  our  house.  On  ask- 
ing what  it  was,  I  was  told,  that  there  were  several 
persons  who  wished  to  make  their  complaints  known  to 
the  King.  They  cried,  Abiet !  Abiet !  It  is  the  duty  of 
the  King's  counsellors,  who  are  called  Wanberotsh,  that 
is  Deputies,  to  carry  the  complaints  of  the  people  before 
the  King.  In  general,  the  four  Wanberotsh  decide 
themselves ;  but  they  must  always  bring  their  decision 
before  the  King,  who  in  other  cases,  relies  upon  them  as 
his  Deputies.  With  the  cry,  Abiet !  Abiet !  the  Abyssi- 
nians  connect  a  strange  story.  They  say  that  the  devil, 
on  the  day  of  judgment,  mil  cry  in  the  same  manner ; 
when  the  Lord  will  ask  him  what  he  requires  from  Him. 
The  devil  will  answer,  that  the  angels  have  taken  from 
him  a  number  of  souls  who  belonged  to  him ;  when  the 
Lord  will  ask  him  their  names,  to  which  he  will  reply,  "I 
do  not  know."  The  Lord  vn\[  then  answer, "If  thou  dost 
not  know  the  name  of  the  thieves,  I  cannot  help  thee.'' 

CITY    OF    BULGA.  73 

Since  the  King  returned  to  Angollala^  several  boys 
have  returned  to  us  for  instruction ;  but  the  King  did 
not  perform  his  former  promise  of  sending  boys. 

July  2 — This  forenoon,  a  servant  of  Berkie,  the  Go- 
vernor of  Bulga,  came  to  us  asking  for  medicine.  His 
master  is  a  Gebi,  that  is,  a  favourite  of  the  King. 
Bulga  is  a  considerable  city  on  the  southern  frontiers 
of  Shoa,  and  the  capital  of  the  province,  vt^hich  is 
called  Fatigar  on  our  maps.  It  is  a  day's  journey 
from  Ankobar  to  Bulga.  How  slowly  our  work  is 
going  on  !  The  people  are  seeking  help  only  for  the 
body,  without  reflecting  much  on  the  salvation  of  the 
soul.  We  take  refuge  in  the  precious  Word  of  God, 
and  hear  the  Prophet  complaining  about  the  same. 
/  have  laboured  in  vain,  and  have  spent  my  strength 
for  nought,  and  in  vain ;  yet  surely  my  judgment  is 
with  the  Lord,  and  my  work  ivith  my  God.  Isaiah 
xlix.  4. 

July  5 — We  were  called  by  the  King,  begging  us  to 
give  him  a  medicine  which  should  secure  him  against 
being  wounded  in  war.  Wc  replied,  that  we  did  n(jt 
know  a  medicine  of  this  kind ;  and  that  our  people 
obtained  victory  by  trusting  in  God,  by  keeping  a  good 
discipline  in  the  army,  and  by  employing  skilful  com- 
manders. This  caused  a  short  exposition  respecting 
military  exercises  in  our  country.  He  was  much  pleased 
on  being  informed  about  the  formation  of  our  quarries. 
The  conversation  then  turned  to  the  subject  of  our 
steamers,    locomotives,   and  rail-roads.     He    expressed 



his  astonishment  at  these  works  of  human  hands. 
After  all,  he  apphed  for  magic  sentences  against  sick- 
ness. Mr.  Isenberg  rephed,  that  this  was  a  great  sin, 
and  entirely  useless  ;  and  that  it  was  the  duty  of  every 
sick  person  to  put  his  confidence  in  God,  and  to  use 
such  remedies  as  God  has  given  to  men. 

July  6,  1839 — A  man  from  Tigre,  whose  name  is 
Akaloo,  called  upon  us  this  afternoon.  He  has  been 
several  years  in  Shoa,  and  is  often  sent  by  the  King  to 
Gondar,  and  other  places  of  Abyssinia.  I  learned 
from  him,  that  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Ankobar,  in 
a  grove,  there  are  a  number  of  persons,  about  forty, 
who  are  followers  of  a  sect  called  Tabiban.  I  suppose 
that  they  are  Jews,  of  the  sect  of  the  Falashas  in  Am- 
hara.  The  people  of  Shoa  are  in  great  fear  of  them, 
like  the  people  of  Amhara,  who  consider  the  Falashas 
as  sorcerers.  Every  skilful  man  in  Shoa  is  called  Ta- 
bib.  I  shall  give  more  information  of  the  Tabiban 

July  7 :  Lord's  day — The  Lord  was  near  to  my 
heart  this  morning  in  reading  His  Word.  Though  we 
are  without  the  blessings  which  our  European  brethren 
have  on  this  day,  yet  the  Lord  is  not  far  from  us  when 
seeking  after  Him  in  humble  prayer  and  meditation  on 
His  Word.  The  Apostle  John,  who  was  banished 
from  the  society  of  his  brethren  to  the  desolate  Isle 
of  Patmos,  urns  there  in  the  spirit  on  the  Lord's 

July  8 — On  inquiring  this  afternoon  after  the  names 


of  the  villages  around  AngoUala,  I  received  the  follow- 
ing information :  1 .  To  the  west  is  a  village  called 
Tsherkos.  2.  Tophit  to  the  north.  3.  Daletsha  to  the 
north-east.  4.  Koni  biet,  where  formerly  Gallas  have 
been,  who  were  converted  by  the  present  King  of  Shoa. 
5.  Mutingensa.  As  nobody  was  with  us,  I  began  to 
read  the  Introduction  to  the  Holy  Scriptures,  published 
by  the  Rev.  Mr.  Huber,  of  Basle.  A  well  wTitten  book 
of  this  kind  in  Amharic  would  be  very  useful  to  us.  I 
may  also  remark,  that  a  number  of  well  written  books 
in  Amharic  would  be  very  desirable.  It  is  not  sufficient 
to  put  the  Bible  only  into  the  hands  of  the  people  ; 
they  are  in  want  of  books  to  illustrate  its  doctrines, 
else  they  read  it  only  in  the  false  hght  of  their 
traditions.  If  Messrs.  Isenberg  and  Gobat  could 
be  charged  by  the  Committee  dui'ing  their  stay  in 
Europe,  to  satisfy  this  want  in  some  measure,  a  great 
senice  would  be  rendered  to  the  Mission  in  Shoa. 

To-day  it  is  one  month  since  om*  arrival  at  Angollala, 
and  to-morrow  the  King  has  settled  that  we  should  go 
to  Ankobar.  To-morrow  we  shall  probably  go  as  far  as 
Debra  Berhan,  and  from  thence  to  Ankobar. 

Since  I  wrote  the  precechng,  the  King  has  employed 
me  in  instructing  Alaca  Serat — chief  of  the  Church  at 
Medhanalim,  in  Ankobar — whom  he  sent  to  us  in- 
stead of  the  boys  we  had  applied  for,  requesting  us  to 
instruct  him.  Upon  asking  the  Alaca  what  he  wished 
to  learn,  he  said  that  he  wished  us  to  teach  him  our 
language.     I  began  therefore  teaching  him  English ; 

£  2 


but  then  I  discovered  that  his  next  object  was  merely 
the  learning  the  names  of  the  letters  in  the  Amharic 
alphabet.  Those  names  are  given  in  Ludolf  s  Gram- 
mar, but  are  at  present  very  seldom  known  in  Abys- 
sinia ;  so  that  it  appears  to  them  a  new  thing.  After 
I  had  given  him  those  names,  I  took  the  Bible  to  read 
with  him.  He  then  said,  he  knew  that  :  he  wished  to 
learn  something  that  he  did  not  know.  I  then  began 
instructing  him  in  geography,  for  which  purpose  I 
commenced  translating  Frank's  Geography,  contracting 
some  parts,  and  enlarging  upon  others ;  giving  the 
Alaca,  every  day,  one  or  two  lessons  in  geography,  and 
a  few  lessons  in  English.  He  takes  an  interest  in 
geography.  In  the  translation,  I  have  arrived  at  the 
end  of  Europe  ;  and  in  teaching,  I  am  come  to  Prussia. 
I  endeavour  to  render  even  this  a  means  of  communi- 
cating the  Gospel  to  him,  continually  praying  that  the 
Lord  may  open  his  eyes :  it  is  difficult  to  penetrate 
through  the  thick  veil  of  his  mind.  When  treating 
on  parts  of  the  Scriptures,  he  has  always  several  expla^ 
nations  at  hand ;  so  that  the  word  does  not  impress 
him.  At  the  same  time  he  is  rich,  and  increased  with 
goods,  and  seems  to  have  need  of  nothing.  May  the 
Lord  open  his  heart  ! 

A  Tigrcan,  of  the  name  of  Akaloo,  frequently  comes 
to  us,  saying,  that  he  wishes  to  learn ;  and  expressing 
himself  ready  to  accept  every  thing  good  that  we  may 
say  to  him.  Yesterday  and  to-day  the  Lord  enabled 
me  to  Itiy  before   him  the   subject  of  his  salvation  : 

GOOD    WILL    OF   THE    KING.  77 

yesterday,  by  removing  every  pretext  for  excuse,  and 
applying  the  parable  of  our  Lord  on  the  talents 
entrusted  ;  and  to-day,  by  especially  urging  on  him  the 
necessity  of  a  real  conversion,  and  of  prayer  to  God  for 
the  enlightening  of  his  mind. 

As  for  the  King,  he  continually  gives  proofs  of  his 
good  will  toward  us,  sho\^^ng  at  the  same  time,  however, 
that  it  is  in  his  temporal  interest  that  he  wishes  to  profit 
from  what  we  know  of  the  arts.  On  this  account,  he 
has  several  times  applied  to  om-  European  servant  to  try 
what  he  knows.  My  knowledge  of  medicine  does  not 
entirely  answer  his  desires,  because  he  cannot  take  his 
usual  diet  when  using  medicine;  nor  does  he  receive  any 
charming  promises  from  me :  on  the  contrary,  he  is  told 
that  the  practice  of  medicine  is  with  us  only  an  incidental 
thing,  not  our  chief  object,  although  we  have  gained  his 
confidence  from  some  successful  cases  where  we  had 
administered  medicine  to  others.  At  our  last  interview 
with  the  King,  he  promised,  at  our  request,  to  send  us 
boys  to  instruct  them  when  at  Ankobar.  Our  chief  en- 
deavours are  directed  to  our  calling  as  Missionaries,  and 
therefore  we  have  been  able  at  present  to  make  but  few 
enquiries  into  the  nature  of  the  country.  Oui*  external 
condition  is  rather  singular  :  the  King  treats  us  quite 
as  his  guests,  sending  us  daily  our  maintenance  into 
our  house,  and  has  ordered  our  Guardian*  to  keep  all 

*  The  Minister  of  Foreign  Affairs,  as  you  would  call  him,  of  the  King 
of  Shoa,  has  about  300  men  in  his  service,  who  are  to  serve  foreigners, 
and  to  be  employed  in  messages  for  the  King.     These  men  are  called  Al- 


troublesome  persons  away  from  us.  By  this  means  we 
are  not  molested  by  disagi*eeable  calls ;  but,  on  the 
other  hand,  we  are  also  prevented  from  frequently 
preachmg  the  Gospel  iti  season  and  out  of  season. 
We  have,  however,  obtained  a  promise  from  the  King, 
that  such  persons  are  not  to  be  prohibited  who  express 
a  desire  to  be  instructed  by  us. 

The  air  here  is  pure,  and  the  climate  very  fresh  :  the 
temperature  varies  from  47°  to  60^  Fahrenheit,  and 
since  the  middle  of  last  month  we  have  had  rain  once 
or  t^\ice  every  day.  At  that  time  the  King  went  to 
Salaish,  where  he  made  the  first  preparations  for  the 
building  of  a  new  town,  remained  there  one  week,  and 
then  returned  hither  to  Angollala. 

The  language  of  this  country  has  some  dialectical 
difference  from  the  Amharic,  as  spoken  in  Amhara  and 
Tigre,  several  sounds  being  different,  and  several  words 
having  a  different  signification.  I  write  as  much  as 
I  can  of  the  Dictionary,  noting  down  the  differences. 

July  11,  1839— The  Tribes  of  Gallas  to  the  south 
of  Shoa,  which  are  tributary  to  the  King  of  Shoa, 
are:  1.  Abedtshoo ;  2.  Adai;  3.  Soddo;  4.  Abbo; 
5.  Sebauj  6.  Tshidda;  7.  Afsala;  8.  Golan;  9.  Mesta; 
10.  Maitsha.  Betsho  and  Ferrer,  Avhich  are  in  the 
south,  are  not  tributary.  Thus  I  am  informed  by  the 
son  of  Bekoo,  Governor  of  the  tribe  Adai. 

July  12 — This  afternoon  we  went  on  an  excursion  to 

frotsh — Affro,  in  the  singular,  which  I  have  rendered  "  Guardian,"  not 
having  been  able  to  ascertain  the  exact  meaning  of  the  term. 


see  the  before-mentioned  river  Tsliatsha^  situated  about 
four  miles  from  Angollala.  We  saw  one  of  its  cata- 
racts, about  seventy  feet  in  height.  On  the  way  I  saw, 
for  the  first  time,  Enset,  a  nice  plant,  which  is  described 
in  Bruce^s  Travels.  The  Abyssinians  use  it  in  baking 
bread,  which  is  wrapped  in  it,  and  gives  to  it  a  particular 
scent,  which  I  do  not  like.  The  water  of  the  Tshatsha 
runs  in  a  deep  dale  between  two  mountains.  The  rivers 
Beresa  and  Tshatsha  are  said  to  go  to  the  Nile.  The 
Tshatsha  separates  the  Gallas  from  Shoa.  Thus  we  are 
on  the  frontiers  of  the  heathen.  The  Lord  grant  that 
this  heathenish  nation,  which  has  its  seat  in  the  centre 
of  Africa,  may  soon  become  a  people  of  God  !  I  hum- 
bly and  urgently  beg  the  Committee  to  give  their  help- 
ing hand  to  this  nation.  The  way  to  a  great  part  of 
the  Gallas  is  accessible  since  the  way  to  Shoa  has  been 
opened.  The  access  to  the  Gallas  is  easier  from  Shoa 
than  from  any  other  place.  We  know  about  forty  tribes 
of  them  by  name.  A  great  number  of  them  are  tribu- 
tary to  Shoa.  The  Gallas  are  in  a  low  state  of  heathen- 
ism. They  have  not  priests,  like  other  heathens  ;  but 
are  opposed  to  the  introduction  of  a  new  religion. 
They  know  only  about  a  Being,  whom  they  call 
Wake.  They  have  no  system  of  religion.  On  par- 
ticular occasions,  they  sacrifice  a  cow,  or  sheep,  to  the 
Wake ;  but  they  are  not  directed  to  do  so  by  priests  : 
it  is  a  free-will  offering.  The  language  is  common  to 
all  Gallas.  All  these  things  seem  to  facilitate  a  Mission 
among  them.     A   particular  reason   for   attempting  a 

80  ARRIVAL    AT 

jMission  among  the  Gallas  is,  because  we  do  not  know 
what  may  be  the  result  of  om-  INIission  in  Shoa.  There 
is  a  village,  called  Tsherkos,  on  the  Tshatsha,  where, 
four  years  ago,  the  Christians  were  killed  by  a  Gover- 
nor, who  hav-ing  fallen  out  with  the  King  of  Shoa, 
raised  the  Gallas  against  him.  At  fii'st,  he  attempted 
to  assassinate  the  King ;  but  his  son  detected  the  pro- 
fligate design  of  his  father  before  it  was  executed. 

July  13, 1839— To-day  is  the  feast  of  the  Abyssinians, 
called  Selassie,  at  which  time  the  King  retm-ns  to  Anko- 
bar.  We  were  therefore  ordered  to  set  out  from  An- 
gollala.  We  left  this  place  with  mixed  feelings.  On 
the  one  hand,  we  praised  God  that  He  had  inclined  the 
heart  of  the  King  of  this  country  toward  us  ;  and,  on 
the  other  hand,  we  were  dissatisfied  mth  the  little  work 
which  we  had  been  able  to  perform  in  om-  holy  object. 
But  we  walk  hy  faith,  not  by  sight.  We  hope  that  oxu- 
means  of  usefulness  will  increase  at  Ankobar,  and  pray 
the  Lord  to  open  us  a  door  to  preach  His  Word. 

AVe  set  out  from  AngoUala  about  ten  o'clock ;  but 
being  unable  to  reach  Ankobar,  we  passed  the  night 
in  a  village  called  Metatit,  on  the  Chacka  mountain, 
about  five  miles  from  Ankobar.  An  old  man  received 
us  into  his  house,  in  which  men  and  animals  were  living 
together,  and  in  a  smoke  which  nearly  suffocated  us. 

July  14 — Tliis  morning  we  arrived  in  safety  at  An- 
kobar. As  we  were  about  to  enter  the  town,  we  were 
stopped  by  the  people  of  the  Governor,  who  told  us 
that  we  must  wait  till  the  Governor  had  been  informed 


of  our  arrival,  and  had  given  orders  for  us  to  enter. 
A  foreigner  cannot  enter  Ankobar  without  having 
received  orders  from  the  Governor.  A  messenger  after- 
ward came  from  the  Governor,  and  conducted  us  to 
our  dwelling. 

E  5 





July  15,  1839 — This  morning  the  King  arrived  at 
Ankobar  :  we  paid  our  respects  to  him  on  his  way  to 
his  house. 

July  16 — To-day  the  King  sent  his  boy,  requesting 
to  know  whether  we  understood  how  to  stamp  dollars. 
In  reply,  we  begged  to  be  introduced  to  the  King.    On 


appearing  before  hinij  we  said,  as  on  a  former  occasion, 
that  we  were  messengers  of  the  Gospel  interfering  with 
no  other  business,  and  consequently  were  not  qualified 
for  coining  money;  but  that  if  he  gave  orders,  we  should 
be  glad  to  serve  him,  by  T\Titing  to  om*  friends  in 
Eui'ope,  who  would  render  him  every  assistance  they 
could,  if  he  did  not  prevent  us  from  teaching  in  his 
country.  At  the  same  time,  Mr.  Isenberg  acquainted 
him  of  his  resolution  of  leaving  Shoa  in  the  month  of 
October,  to  go  to  Em'ope,  where  he  would  communicate 
to  our  fi'iends  the  wish  of  the  King.  He  approved  of 
all  that  we  said.  Having  retired  to  our  house,  the 
King's  boy  came  and  conducted  us  to  another  house, 
in  which  the  father  of  the  King  had  formerly  dwelt. 
We  were  very  glad  of  this  change,  having  been  much 
molested  by  the  people  at  our  first  house.  On  entering 
oui'  new  house,  a  ]\Iahomedan,  whose  name  is  Nasir, 
from  a  Galla  tribe,  called  Daue,  called  upon  us.  He  is 
the  son  of  the  Governor  of  his  tribe,  whose  name  is 
Abbe.  He  said,  that  Beroo,  the  ruler  of  Argobba, 
having  taken  from  his  father  all  his  land,  had  fled  for 
refuge  to  the  King  of  Shoa,  who  restored  him  to  his 
former  power ;  but  that  his  country  was  tributary  t(j 
Shoa.  This  man  gave  me  the  following  information 
respecting  the  Gallas  dwelling  in  the  north  of  Shoa. 
The  capital  city  of  Beroo,  the  ruler  of  Argobba,  who  is 
dependant  on  Gondar,  is  Aineh,  on  the  TshafFa  river, 
which  is  called  Bcrkona  by  the  people  of  Shoa.  The 
Tshaffa  comes  from  the  west,  and  sends  its  water  to  the 


Hawash,  in  the  country  of  Adel.  The  Tshaffa  river  — 
so  called  by  the  Gallas — separates  the  northern  Gallas 
from  Shoa.  There  are  the  following  Tribes  :  1.  Dane; 
2.  WoUo;  3.  Wara;  4.  GafFra;  5.  Wotshale;  6.  Sako; 
7.  Bottolloj  8.  Tehuladere;  9.  Gille ;  10.  Assallo ; 
11.  Assubo;  12.  Lagagora ;  13.  Gama ;  14.  Sagambo; 
15.  Kallola;  16.  Fctshoo;  17.  Ittoo  ;  18.  Karaiu ; 
]  9.  Arrusi ;  20.  Tcherker.  The  last  four  Tribes  are 
in  the  cast  of  Shoa. 

Nasir  had  a  Christian  boy  with  him,  who  wished  to 
be  instructed  by  us.  The  name  of  this  boy  is  Guebra 
Georgis,  about  fourteen  years  of  age.  His  father  is  a 
Debtera — a  learned  Abyssinian — whose  father,  Tecla 
Haimanot,  was  Alaca  of  the  Church  of  St.  George.  I 
received  a  good  impression  of  this  boy  on  my  first  con- 
versation with  him.  He  is  the  only  boy  who  has  a  real 
desire  for  instruction.  He  has  a  good  understanding. 
His  father  intends  to  make  him  a  priest,  and  to  send 
him  to  Gondar  to  be  ordained  when  the  Abuna  comes. 
If  his  heart  should  be  changed  by  the  Holy  Spirit,  he 
would  become  very  useful  to  our  Mission.  From  other 
information,  I  learned  that  the  Tshalfa  and  Berkona  are 
different  rivers,  which  having  joined,  flow  to  the  Hawash. 

July  18,  1839 — To-day  I  commenced  instructing 
Guebra  Georgis  :  I  began  reading  the  Gospel  of  St. 
Matthew  with  him. 

Jidy  22 — In  reading  with  Guebra  Georgis,  I  have 
got  as  far  as  the  middle  of  St.  Matthew's  Gospel.  I 
have  also  commenced  instructing  him  in  Geography. 

VISIT    TO    THE   CHURCH    OF   ST.    GEORGE.  85 

To-day  is  tlie  feast  of  Mariam.  Tliis  evening  a  bov, 
about  nine  years  old,  came  to  our  house,  saying  tliat  his 
father  and  mother  were  dead ;  that  his  father  had  left 
him  only  two  pieces  of  salt,  which  the  people  of 
his  house  had  stolen  from  him ;  and  that  the  people, 
instead  of  returning  his  property,  had  driven  him  out 
of  the  house.  Being  disappointed  of  getting  boys  from 
the  King,  we  were  resolved  to  receive  all  who  had  a  real 
desire  for  instruction. 

July  28  .-  Lord's  day — I  went  to  the  Chiu'ch  of  St. 
George,  and  gave  a  copy  of  the  New  Testament  to 
Alaca  Wolda  Hanna,  who  thankfully  accepted  it. 

July  29 — To-day  was  a  great  Tescar  in  honour  of 
the  father  of  the  present  King,  who  died  twenty-eight 
years  ago.  On  this  occasion  the  priests  pray  in  the 
Church ;  and  having  finished  their  ceremonies,  eat  and 
drink  as  much  as  they  like.  We  saw  the  tomb  of  the 
late  King.  There  are  a  great  many  images,  representing 
the  achievements  of  the  King,  and  the  Gallas  whom  he 
himself  had  killed  in  war.  Buffalos,  lions,  and  leopards, 
which  the  King  had  shot  are  also  seen.  The  present 
King  had  a  painter  from  Gondar  to  execute  these 
paintings  in  the  Abyssinian  style. 

July  SO — This  morning  the  Tabot- Altar — was 
brought  with  shouting  into  the  Church  of  Tecla  Hai- 
manot,  built  by  the  present  King.  This  is  the 
second  chm'ch  which  the  King  has  built  at  Ankobar. 
Having  yesterday  taken  another  boy  into  our  house,  a 
little  disturbance  arose  to-day.     Serta  Wolda,  to  whose 


care  the  King  commits  strangers,  having  been  informed 
that  we  had  received  a  second  boy,  repeatedly  charged 
our  servant  to  prevent  persons  coming  to  us.  We  im- 
mediately informed  the  King  of  these  proceedings,  and 
we  had  the  pleasm'e  to  receive  his  orders,  that  nobody 
who  Abashed  to  be  instructed  should  be  hindered  coming 
to  our  house.  Since  that  time  the  number  of  our 
scholars  has  increased. 

I  finished  to-day  the  physical  part  of  Geography  with 
Guebra  Georgis.    He  is  much  pleased  with  Geography. 

August  \,  1839 — Since  I  was  in  the  Church  of  St. 
George  several  priests  have  visited  us  to  talk  about  re- 
ligious subjects.  Indeed  most  of  the  persons  who  have 
come  to  us  for  that  j^urpose  are  of  that  church,  the  reason 
of  which  may  be,  that  half  a  year  ago,  Alaca  Melat 
was  dismissed  by  the  King  in  consequence  of  the  dis- 
putes about  the  second  and  third  births  of  Christ.  The 
people  of  St.  George  believe  in  two  births. 

August  4 — This  afternoon  I  made  the  acquaintance 
of  a  man  whose  name  is  Ai'kadis.  His  business  is  to 
instruct  a  number  of  boys — about  100 — in  singing. 
Desiring  to  get  access  to  his  scholars  I  endeavoured  to 
gain  over  this  man  to  me.  He  promised  to  send  his 
son,  about  seventeen  years  of  age,  to  be  instructed. 
The  instruction  in  singing  is  given  in  conformity  with 
the  book  of  Fared.  If  a  boy  does  not  like  instruction, 
he  is  punished  by  his  parents — a  custom  in  Abys- 
sinia. \Miat  a  great  blessing  these  boys  would  become 
to  their  country,  if  they  were  instructed  in  the  pure 
knowledge  of  Christ ! 

KING   OF   SHOA's    FAMILY.  87 

August  5 — A  man  of  our  house  gave  us  this  morn- 
ing the  following  information  about  the  King  and  his 
family.  Sahela  Selassieh  became  King  of  Shoa  when 
twelve  years  of  age,  and  has  now  reigned  twenty-seven 
years.  He  is  the  seventh  king  of  Shoa.  The  follow- 
ing is  the  line  of  the  kings  of  Shoa:  1.  Nagathj  2. 
Sebashi ;  3.  Abie,  who  took  Ankobar  in  war  from 
the  Gallas;  -i.  Amaha  Fesus;  5.  Asfa  Wassen  ;  6. 
Wussen  Segged;  7.  Sahela  Selassieh,  the  jjresent  king. 
The  King  has  ten  daughters  by  several  \\dves.  By  his 
tu-st  and  favourite  vn£e,  who  is  called  Besabesh,  he  has 
a  daughter  and  two  sons.  The  eldest  son  is  twelve 
years  of  age.  The  male  childi*en  of  the  King  are  kept 
in  prison  at  Quatsho,  on  the  eastern  fi'ontiers  of  Shoa, 
in  the  neighbourhood  of  Adel.  On  the  death  of  the 
King,  his  eldest  son  is  taken  out  of  prison  and  in- 
troduced as  king  by  the  ]\Ialatia  Agafari — thefii'st  door- 
keeper— whose  duty  is  to  crown  the  King.  The  new 
King  then  puts  his  brethren  in  prison,  being  afraid  of 
distm-bances  which  they  might  create  against  him. 

This  afternoon  the  King  went  to  Machala  Wans,  a 
village  about  five  miles  distant  from  Ankobar,  in  order 
to  keep  the  sixteen  days^  fasting  of  the  Abyssinians  in 
memory  of  the  Felsat  (ascension)  of  Mary.  This  fast 
is  called  the  Felsata  fast. 

August  6 — The  above  mentioned  fast  commences  to- 
day. Since  the  King  has  withdi-aAvn  the  prohibition  of 
Serta  Wolda,  respecting  persons  coming  to  us,  we  have 
had  more  people  to  instruct  in  the  Word  of  God.     I 


called  in  the  afternoon  upon  Alaca  Wolda  Serat, 
and  spoke  with  him  about  the  difference  between  the 
Word  of  God  and  that  of  men.  I  afterward  asked 
him  about  their  yEthiopic  books  :  he  gave  me  a  number 
•of  titles.  He  also  said,  that  the  Christians  flying  from 
Gragne — a  bigoted  Mahomedan  king  of  Adel — went 
beyond  the  country  of  Gurague,  taking  with  them  books 
and  600  Tabots  (communion  tables.) 

August  7, 1839 — This  morning  I  asked  Akaloo,  whom 
I  have  mentioned  before,  what  the  Abyssinians  eat  when 
they  fast.  He  answered,  that  they  were  only  allowed  to 
eat  goman,  stinging  nettles,  and  dry  bread.  The  present 
fast  is  called  the  fast  of  Nahasie.  Nahasie  is 
our  August.  Then  follows  the  Hodad  fast,  in  the 
months  of  February  and  March,  which  lasts  40  days ; 
after  which,  in  June,  the  fast  of  the  Apostles,  which  lasts 
twenty-five  or  thirty  days;  and  then  the  fast  of  Nineveh, 
M'hich  lasts  three  days.  In  the  month  of  December  is 
Tsoma  ledat.  Otherwise  they  fast  every  Wednesday  and 
Friday.  Tlie  fasts  of  Felsata,  Hodadie,  Apostles,  as 
well  as  those  of  every  week,  ai'e  imposed  on  them  as 
a  work  of  necessity.  As  to  keeping  of  the  other  fasts 
it  is  voluntarily.  Thus  they  pass  a  great  part  of  the 
year  in  fasting,  seeking  thereby  their  own  righteous- 
ness. If  a  person  does  not  fast,  he  is  sepai^ated  from 
the  Church ;  and  if  he  does  not  repent,  he  is  not  in- 
terred in  the  common  burial  ground. 

August  8 — This  afternoon  a  man,  whose  name  is 
Habtu,  came  to  us.  As  he  was  reported  to  bean  adherent 

SECT    OF    THE    TABIBAN.  89 

to  the  sect  of  the  Tabiban,  I  asked  him  about  them. 
His  relations  are  followers  of  that  sect.  He  approved 
of  all  that  Akaloo  had  formerly  told  me  about  them. 
Their  forefathers,  he  said,  about  a  thousand  years  ago, 
came  from  Amhara  to  Shoa,  and  lived  in  caves,  in  the 
neighbom-hood  of  Ankobar.  They  have  still  three 
monasteries  in  Shoa,  at  Felema,  Thalassa,  and  Deifii. 
He  said  that  the  people  of  Shoa  insult  them  with 
nick-names,  but  that  they  love  God ;  that  they  have  the 
Bible  in  another  language ;  and  are  in  possession  of 
other  books.  I  shall  go  one  day  to  see  this  strange 
people.  I  suppose  that  they  are  of  the  party  of  the 

To-day  was  the  fast  of  the  childi-en.  Childi-en 
are  exempted  from  fasting  till  they  are  twelve 
years  of  age,  except  when  they  go  to  the  Lord's  supper, 
when  they  are  compelled  to  fast.  Once  in  the  year, 
that  is  to-day,  they  are  obliged  to  take  the  blessed 
sacrament.  Any  one  who  spits,  or  plucks  off  a  leaf  from 
a  tree,  is  not  admitted  to  the  communion  table.  They 
receive  a  w  hite  cloth  from  the  church,  in  which  they  are 
enveloped  up  to  the  mouth,  and  stand  from  morning  till 
the  evening,  observing  the  greatest  silence;  but  they  do 
not  understand  any  thing  about  the  ceremony.  I  asked 
a  boy  whether  he  knew  why  he  took  the  blessed  sacra- 
ment ;  when  he  replied,  because  it  made  him  grow. 
What  darkness  is  spread  over  this  people,  both  young  and 
old  !  As  we  have  many  persons  coming  to  us,  I  much 
wish  that  we  had  a  quantity  of  copies  of  the  Holy  Scrip- 


tures  in  Amliaric.     The  people  seem  to  understand  who 
we  are,  and  why  we  have  come  to  their  country. 

August  9,  1839 — I  began  to  collect  a  Vocabulary  of 
theGaUa  Language.  The  son  of  Ay  to  Bekoo  called  upon 
us.  He  said,  that  there  was  a  queen  of  a  Galla  tribe, 
called  Mulofalada,  which  is  in  some  measure  dependant 
on  Shoa.  The  King  is  said  to  have  invited  her  to  come 
to  Shoa ;  when  she  replied,  that  if  he  wished  her  to 
come,  he  must  cover  the  whole  way  with  silk.  She 
is  very  rich  and  strong  in  war :  her  name  is  Tshamieh. 
At  the  time  of  King  Abie,  a  wife  being  the  ruler  of  a 
Galla  tribe,  v/as  in  possession  of  this  town.  Her  name 
was  Anko.  Hence  the  name  of  this  tovAoi — Ankobar, 
that  is,  the  door  of  the  Anko.  "Bar"  means  door.  In 
Shoa,  there  are  fifty-one  Abagas,  or  watchmen  of  the 
frontiers.  Their  duty  is  to  inform  the  King  of  the 
arrival  of  strangers.  They  are  obliged  in  general,  to 
secure  the  boundaries  against  inroads  or  other  casualties. 
Herein  we  may  see  the  margraves  of  old  in  Germany. 
The  Abaga  of  the  Mahomedans  is  called  Walasma. 
Thus,  for  instance,  Walasma  Mahomed,  Walasma  Musa, 
on  the  frontiers  of  Adel. 

August  10 — A  priest  from  Bulga  called  upon  us  this 
afternoon,  saying,  that  there  are  two  opinions  in  Shoa 
respecting  the  imploring  and  venerating  of  Mary.  There 
is  a  party  at  Bulga  and  Manshar,  in  the  province  of 
Fatigar,  who  say,  that  Maiy  is  to  be  venerated  and 
implored  as  Christ  himself.  This  party  is  called 
"Mesle  Wold;'^  that  is,  (in  the  iEthiopic)  like  the  Son. 


Another  party,  which  prevails  at  Ankobar  and  Debra 
Libanos,  is  of  opinion  that  the  Son  only  ought  to  be 
implored  and  venerated.  This  party  is  called  "Wa 
lawold  magsat/'  (only  to  the  Son  belongs  veneration.) 
The  late  Abuna  Cj^illus,  being  asked  about  this  doc- 
trine, forbid  them  to  dispute  about  it.  He  also  forbid 
them  to  eat  tish  at  the  time  of  fasting. 

Arkadis,  who  instructs  boys  in  singing,  called  upon 
us  again.  "N^Tien  he  left,  we  gave  him  a  copy  of  the 
New  Testament.  His  son  comes  every  day.  I  am 
reading  with  him  the  Gospel  of  St.  John.  With  Guebra 
Georgis  I  have  read  the  Gospels  of  St.  Matthew,  St. 
Mark,  and  St.  Luke. 

August  11 — Our  coppst,  Wolda  Zadek,  told  me, 
that  Efat  is  divided  into  Upper  and  Lower  Efat.  Mach- 
food — on  our  maps  falsely  called  Marfood — belongs  to 
Upper  Efat.  Alioamba  is  in  Lower  Efat.  The  district 
of  jNIachfood,  it  is  true,  has  a  gi'eat  elevation  compared 
with  the  situation  of  Ankobar,  Alioamba,  and  its 
neighbom-hood ;  and  that  may  be  the  real  cause  of  this 
division.  Our  Workie  told  us  this  evening,  that  the 
people  of  the  Habab,  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Mas- 
sowah,  professed  the  Christian  faith  a  short  time 
ago ;  but  that  they  turned  Mahomedans  on  account  of 
a  monk,  who  forbid  them  to  di'ink  the  milk  of  camels, 
and  not  being  inclined  to  comply  with  this,  they  changed 
their  religion.  Most  of  them  have  still  Christian 
names.  When  I  was  at  Massowab,  I  did  not  know 
this,  else  I  should  have  made  inquiries.     Perhaps  they 


could  be  brought  back  to  the  Christian  faith  in  its 
better  and  pvu-er  form.  Their  language  is  that  of 
Massowah,  which  is  the  iEthiopic  in  a  corrupted  state. 
With  Guebra  Gcorgis  I  have  finished  the  Geography 
of  Europe. 

August  12, 1839— To-day  is  the  feast  of  the  Annun- 
ciation of  Mary.  Three  priests  were  here  from  Debra 
Libanos,  asking  about  the  second  and  third  births  of 
Christ.  I  read  John  iii.,and  spoke  about  the  regeneration 
of  the  sinner. 

August  13 — The  priests  of  Debra  Libanos  came 
again  to-day,  with  several  others,  asking  about  the 
births  of  Christ.  Afterward,  a  man  from  Gondar  called 
upon  us  :  his  name  is  Guebra  Selassie.  I  asked  him 
about  CafFa  and  Enarea.  He  said,  that  it  is  ten  days' 
journey  from  Gondar  to  Basso  on  the  Nile ;  and  from 
Basso  to  Enarea  fifteen  days;  that  cofi"ee  is  brought  from 
Cafi"a,  and  civets  from  Enarea ;  and  that  shells,  corals, 
and  pieces  of  salt  are  the  current  money  there. 

This  afternoon  I  called  upon  Alaca  Wolda  Selas- 
sie, of  the  Chm-ch  of  Tecla  Haimanot  in  Afcrbeini. 
His  Church  was  built  by  the  present  King.  When 
I  returned,  I  found  several  people,  with  whom  I 
read  Matt.  iii.  On  reading  the  passage.  And  his  meat 
was  locusts  and  wild  honey,  they  said,  that  John  did 
not  eat  locusts  (anbata),  but  another  meat.  They  are 
afraid  lest  they  should  make  John  a  Mahomedan,  be- 
cause the  Mahomedans  eat  locusts.  Thus  they  read  the 
Bible  in  the  false  light  of  human  traditions. 


August  14 — Very  early  this  morning  a  priest  came, 
wishing  to  see  us,  having  learn,ed  that  we  had  been 
at  Jerusalem.  At  first  we  spoke  about  the  corrupt 
state  of  the  Christians  at  Jerusalem,  and  their  cpiarrel- 
ling  about  trifling  things ;  afterward  about  the  Jeru- 
salem above,  to  which  we  go  by  a  living  faith  in  Christ, 
and  by  worshipping  the  Father  in  spirit  and  in  truth  ; 
and,  finally,  we  spoke  about  the  great  pride  ^dth  which 
pilgrims  come  back  from  Jerusalem,  thinking  them- 
selves to  be  saints.  A  priest  then  came,  reproving 
lamentations  for  the  dead.  He  said,  that  Afawork 
(Chrysostomus)  had  also  reproved  that  custom. 

August  15 — To-day  many  scholars  were  here.  Three 
boys  from  the  Church  of  Medhanalim,  several  persons 
from  St.  Mary,  several  priests  from  St.  Michael,  and 
the  priests  of  Debi-a  Libanos.  I  read  John  i.  with 
them.  A  blind  man,  who  seems  to  be  anxious  for 
insti"uction,  was  with  them. 

August  16 — I  called  upon  Alaca  Wolda  Scrat,  and 
asked  him  why  he  did  not  continue  to  study  Geogra- 
phy. Since  he  has  been  at  Ankobar  he  has  given  up 
this  study. 

August  18:  Lord's  Day — This  day  the  Abyssinians 
celebrate  the  memory  of  Christ^s  transfiguration  on 
Mount  Tabor.  I  went  to  the  Church  of  Medhanalim. 
They  call  this  feast  Baala  Tabor,  or,  as  the  people  who 
have  no  knowledge  call  it,  "  Behu."  At  night  the 
boys  go  out  taking  fiambcaus  with  them. 

August  19,  1839 — Our  former  guide,  Mahomed  Ali, 


from  the  Adail  tribe  Wema,  arrived  this  afternoon  from 
Tadjurra^  mthout  having  anything  for  us.  We  longed 
very  much  to  receive  money,  as  all  ovu*  money  was 
spent ;  but  we  were  disappointed.  Mahomed  Ali  in- 
formed us  of  the  arrival  of  two  Franks  at  Tadjurra.  A 
priest  from  Debra  Libanos  informed  iis,  that  Tecla 
Haimanot,  who  is  considered  as  the  Reformer  of  the 
Abyssinian  Church,  was  born  at  Bulga,  and  died  at 
Debra  Libanos. 

The  King  sent  this  afternoon  an  Abyssinian  cloth  to 
each  of  us,  saying  that  it  was  cold.  As  we  were 
about  to  send  our  servant  to  the  market-place,  wc 
asked  him  about  the  measm-es  of  Shoa.  He  said,  that 
twenty  kuna  of  grain  make  a  daule ;  that  one  daule 
of  barley  is  got  for  two  pieces  of  salt ;  and  that  one 
daule  of  wheat  is  bought  for  five  pieces  of  salt.  In 
Tigre,  sixteen  measures  make  a  madega;  besides,  one 
measm'e  is  smaller  than  a  kuna  in  Shoa.  For  one 
piece  of  salt,  three  loads  of  wood  are  obtained  at  An- 
kobar.  A  Maria  Theresa  dollar  is  at  present  changed 
for  seventeen  or  twenty  pieces  of  salt.  Sometimes  a 
dollar  is  changed  only  for  eight,  ten,  twelve,  or  fifteen 
pieces  of  salt.  The  place  where  salt-pieces  are  changed, 
is  Aliaomba,  a  large  village  about  six  miles  distant 
from  the  east  of  Ankobar,  the  inhabitants  of  whom 
are  nearly  all  Mahomedans.  The  place  where  mules, 
horses,  &c.  are  bought,  is  Debra  Berhan,  about  twenty 
miles  to  the  west  of  Ankobar.  These  places  are  the 
greatest  market-places.    At  Ankobar,  there  is  a  market 

AND    RATES   OF   BARTER.  95 

e\'ery  Satiu"day,  where  you  can  buy  sheep,  corn,  and 
sometimes  grease  and  other  things.  The  market- 
place is  without  the  town,  about  a  mile  distant,  on 
the  river  Aii-ara  and  the  Chacka  mountain.  About 
weights  I  have  got  no  information ;  for  instance,  how 
many  dollars  are  paid  for  an  ounce  of  gold.  At 
Gondar,  the  ounce  (wokich)  of  gold  is  valued  at  nine 

With  regard  to  establishing  a  commerce  between 
Shoa  and  a  foreign  country,  the  present  cii'cum- 
stances  perhaps  appear  suitable  for  it.  The  way 
between  Shoa  and  the  coast  does  not  occasion  great 
hindi'ances,  if  the  matter  could  be  settled  with  the 
people  of  Adel  and  the  King  of  Shoa.  The  trade 
with  mules  and  horses  would  be  the  most  promising, 
as  a  good  mule  is  here  worth  about  ten  or  twelve  dol- 
lars, and  a  good  horse  eight  or  nine  dollars  :  on  the 
coast,  a  mule  is  worth  about  twenty-four  or  twenty-six 
dollars.  Therefore,  if  merchants  would  buy  them  in 
Shoa,  they  would  derive  a  good  profit. 

August  20 — The  King  sent  us  to-day  fifty  pieces  of 
salt.  We  are  very  thankful  for  all  that  the  King  has 
given  us,  as  our  money  is  spent.  Our  clothes,  paper, 
ink,  money,  and  every  thing  is  gone  ;  and  our  luggage, 
which  we  left  at  Tadjurra,  is  not  expected  to  an'ive  for 
three  or  four  months ;  and  when  it  does,  we  have  no 
means  to  pay  for  the  carriage  of  it. 

The  Tigi-eans  are  of  opinion  that  Christ  anointed 
himself.       In    saying    so,    they    cut     off   the     Holy 


Ghost  from  Christ,  by  whom  He  was  anointed.  They 
who  believe  in  the  three  births  of  Christ  say,  that 
Christ,  in  the  womb  of  Mary,  was  anointed  by  the 
Holy  Ghost ;  and  this  they  call  a  third  birth.  We 
reply,  with  reference  to  Luke  i.  35,  that  the  Holy 
Ghost  did  not  come  at  that  time  upon  Christ,  but  upon 
Mary,  whom  the  power  of  the  Highest  over-shadowed  ; 
and  consequently,  that  Mary  received  the  Holy  Ghost 
at  that  time,  and  not  Christ,  upon  whom  the  Spirit  of 
God  descended,  when  He  was  baptized  on  the  Jordan. 
Matt.  iii.  It  does  not  appear  that  they  consider  the 
baptism  of  Christ  as  a  third  birth,  as  I  was  of  opinion 
that  they  did.  A  priest,  called  Biesana,  is  said  to  have 
brought  from  Gondar  to  Shoa  the  dispute  about  the 
three  births  of  Christ.  Respecting  the  death  of  Mary, 
it  is  said  by  one  party,  that  she  died  as  an  offering  for 
the  sins  of  the  world,  or  at  least  that  she  has  redeemed 
150,000  souls ;  others  say,  that  she  died  to  go  to  rest  till 
she  should  rise  from  the  dead.  We  always  tell  them, 
that  their  errors  and  confusion  of  opinions  arises  from 
neglecting  the  study  of  the  Bible. 

August  21,  1839 — A  priest,  whose  name  is  Guebra 
Selassie,  turned  the  conversation  to  the  subject  of  leap- 
year.  He  said,  that  the  Abyssinians  call  the  names  of 
their  years  after  the  four  Evangelists;  that  in  the  year  of 
Matthew,  of  Mark,  and  of  Luke,  they  add  five  days  to 
the  year ;  but  in  the  year  of  John,  they  add  six  days. 
This  addition  is  called  pagmie.  The  present  is  the 
year  of    John.      The  Evangelists    are  the   Alacas   or 


rulers  of  their  years;  therefore,  if  you  ask  Avheti  a 
mail  was  born,  or  when  any  event  happened,  they 
say,  in  the  year  of  ^Matthew,  or  Mark,  or  Luke,  or 

This  afternoon,  a  priest  of  Gui'ague,  whose  name  is 
Laaka  ]\Iariam,  eame  to  us.  "VVe  asked  him  about  his 
countiy,  when  he  gave  us  the  f ollowang  information .  From 
Ankobar  to  Bulga  it  is  one  or  two  days'  journey;  from 
Bulga  to  Garague,  five  or  eight  days.  That  in  going 
to  Gurague  you  pass  through  the  country  of  ten 
tribes  of  Gallas :  1.  Ferrer;  2.  Roggi ;  3.  Endote; 
4,  Adai  ;  5.  Abboo  ;  6.  Woretshersa;  7.  Tshidda  ; 
8.  Abado. ;  9.  Soddo ;  10.  Liban  and  Gumbushoo. 
You  pass  the  river  Hawash  in  the  tribe  of  Abboo. 
"When  you  have  passed  the  Hawash,  you  come,  after 
several  days,  to  a  large  lake,  called  Suai,  in  which  is  an 
island  inhabited  by  monks  :  there  is  another  lake,  in 
the  countiy  of  the  Abboo-Gallas,  called  Killole;  and 
one  called  Arsud.  The  chief  Governors  of  Gurague, 
are  Keroo  and  Aminoo.  Keroo  resides  at  Watsho. 
Both  are  tributary  to  the  King  of  Shoa.  Gm*ague  is 
so  called  on  account  of  its  situation.  It  is  on  the  left, 
if  you  look  to  the  west  from  Gondar.  "  Gera''  means 
the  left,  and  "  gie ''  signifies  side :  hence  on  the  left 
side.  The  greater  part  of  the  inhabitants  of  Gui-ague 
are  Christians ;  yet  there  are  many  Mahomedans  and 
heathens.  The  places  where  there  arc  Christians,  are 
the  following  : — 1.  Aimellelle  ;  2.  Nurreno;  3.  Besant- 
shooboo;    4.  Manes;    5.  Malakdaino;    G.  Wogoraui ; 



7.  Buijana;    8.    Foudamo;    9.  Datslii;    10.  Jettaue; 

11.  Aretshat;  12.  Hebcrrer;  13.  Arogomane;  14.  Dobi; 

15.  Fawitui  j  16.  Jatabona  j  17.  Sera  Sangania; 
18.  Mohor.  The  places  where  Armeni  or  heathens 
reside,  are: — 1.  Mascan;  2.  Aborrat ;  3.  Fakedar ; 
4.  Warub;  5.  Mans;  6.  Sabolas;  7.  Faderek;  8.  Wum- 
nan;    9.    Allakiro ;    10.    Duhaber  ;    11.    Endagach ; 

12.  Masmas;    13.    Magar;    14.    Ener;    15.    Asha ; 

16.  Tshaha;  17.  Wollane.  The  most  distinguished 
mountains  of  Gurague  are  :  Karra,  Kotaltiti,  Gafersa, 
Uttukuf,  Make,  Teru,  Engedokotto,  Bodegabab,  Dino- 
koti,  Enokaler,  and  Sert.  The  principal  rivers  are  : 
Wiser,  in  the  district  of  Danu,  where  the  Priest  himself 
was  born;  Dersaf;  Asas  ;  Sherbanes;  Meke, and  Jama- 
rakoadio.  Most  of  these  rivers  run  into  the  lake  of 
Suai.  On  the  way  from  Ankobar  to  the  Hawash 
you  pass  three  rivers ;  namely,  Akaki,  Guratsha,  and 
Furri.  The  current  money  in  Gurague  is  salt  : 
dollars  do  not  pass.  Knives,  scissors,  needles,  &c., 
are  well  received.  There  is  much  coffee  in  Gm-ague; 
and  wine  is  also  produced.  Tasma  honey,  of  the 
most  precious  kind,  is  found  in  the  province  of 
Abamada.  Their  houses  are  better  than  those  in 
Shoa.  The  women  of  Gurague  make  carpets  from 
the  Ensiete  plant,  of  which  I  made  mention  above. 
There  are  about  thirty-nine  monasteries  in  Gurague. 
The  Galla  Tribes  beyond  Gurague,  are  the  following : — 
Maroko,  Laki,  Lani,  Damo,  and  Endegan.  In  the 
neighbourhood  of  Gurague  is  the  country  of  Senshero, 


where  are  many  Christians  and  IMahomedans ;  eight 
days  joiu-uey  beyond  is  that  of  Mager,  the  King  of 
which  is  called  Degoie.  He  is  very  strong.  There  is 
another  country,  in  the  same  neighbourhood,  called 
Kortshassi :  it  is  surrounded  by  Gallas  on  every  side ; 
and  all  the  inhabitants  are  Christians. 

I  read  with  the  priest  several  chapters  in  the  Gospel 
of  St.  IMatthew,  and  afterward  gave  him  a  copy  of  the 
New  Testament,  wi'iting  in  it — "  The  messengers  of  the 
Gospel  give  this  book  to  the  Christian  Churches  of 
Gm'ague,  in  token  of  love." 

August  22,  1839 — As  yesterday  closed  the  fast  of 
Maiy,  this  day  was  one  of  great  joy,  and  the  people 
ate  and  drank  to  the  delight  of  their  hearts  :  it  is 
therefore  called  a  great  Fasika.  This  feast  is  called 
Tescar.  The  King  sent  a  cow,  with  some  hens  and 
eggs  to  our  house.  This  Tescar  had  a  bad  influence 
upon  our  instruction,  as  nobody  came  to-day.  Our 
Guebra  left  us  to  eat  and  drink  in  the  house  of  his 

August  23— Our  copyist,  Habta  Selassie,  who  is  a 
learned  Abyssinian,  gave  me  the  following  list  of  iEthi- 
opic  books:  1.  Aragawi  manfasawi ;  2.  Tilikisus;  3. 
Marishak ;  (these  are  called  the  books  of  the  Monks,) 
4.  Taamrat  ;  5.  Gadela  Samatal ;  6.  Tamera  Mariam; 
7.  Dilsana  Mariam;  8.  Argano;  9.  Senkesar ;  10. 
Gadela  Gcorgis ;  1 1 .  Tamera  Georgis  ;  12.  Gadela  Tccla 
Haimanot ;  13.  Gadala  Guebra  Manfa  Kedus;  14.  Ga- 
dela Guebra  Christos;  15.  Abu  Shaker;  16.  Sena 
F  2 

100  ^THIOPIC    BOOKS. 

Markos ;  17.  Hezana  Moia;  18.  Etshi  Johauos ;  19. 
Sena  Ailiud  ;  20.  Genset ;  21.  Georgis  WoldaAmed; 
22.  Mazhafa  Mistir;  23.  Erotaa  Haimanot;  24. 
Wudattie  Amlak ;  25.  Guebra  Hemamal;  26.  Tamera 
Jesus ;  27.  Kalamentos  ;  28.  Seifa  Selassie ;  29.  Der- 
sana  Michael  j  30.  Dersana  Medhanalim  ;  31.  Kufalie; 
32.  Sefafa  Zedek ;  33.  Egsiabher  Negs;  34.  Amada 
Mistir;  35.  Zoma  Degua;  36.  Sena  Fetrat.  Amada 
Mistir  and  Sena  Fetrat  are  written  in  Amharic.  In 
the  Church  of  St.  George  there  arc  seventy  books 
belonging  to  it.  It  is  very  difficult  to  get  a  book  by 
purchase  ;  if  you  wish  to  possess  one,  you  must  get  it 

I  spoke  to  our  copyist  about  the  conversion  of  the 
Gallas.  He  said  that  the  Gallas  do  not  like  the  Chris- 
tian Religion,  and  say  that  the  people  of  Shoa  are  not 
better  than  themselves;  that  they  will  not  bear  the 
heavy  yoke  which  is  imposed  on  them  by  fasting ;  and 
that  they  are  offended  at  the  iEthiopic  language — to 
them  an  unknown  language — in  which  they  are  taught 
by  the  Abyssinians.  I  said,  "  ^^  ty  do  you  impose 
on  them  such  a  heavy  load  ?  Do  you  not  know  what 
Christ  says,  (^latt.  xi.  30.)  My  yoke  is  easy,  and  my 
hiirden  is  light  ?  Why  do  you  imitate  the  example 
of  the  Pharisees  who  transgressed  the  commandment 
of  God  by  their  traditions  ?  " 

August  24,  1839 — Several  persons  called  upon  us, 
asking  for  the  Kalem  abenat.  The  Abyssinians  are  of 
opinion  that  there  is  a  medicine,  which,  put  into  bread. 


is  taken  by  cliildi-en  or  persons  who  wish  to  under- 
stand reading  and  wi'iting  quickly.  They  beheve  that 
eveiT  man  who  comes  from  Egjqit — which  they  call 
Gipz,  and  an  Egyptian,  Gipzi — is  in  possession  of  this 
medicine.  We  replied,  that  we  did  not  know  such  a 
medicine;  and  said,  "Why  are  all  men  of  Shoa  so 
ignorant,  if  there  is  such  a  good  medicine  against  igno- 
rance ?  God  from  the  beginning  imposed  on  man  to 
labour.  All  knowledge  and  skiKulness  must  be  got  by 
exerting  our  powers  of  body  and  mind."  As  there 
were  about  twelve  persons  with  us^  I  read  with  them  the 
Heidelberg  Catechism,  which  JNIr.  Isenberg  had  trans- 
lated into  Amharic. 

August  26 — I  called  uponAlaca  Wolda  Hanna,  who 
was  reading  with  Alaca  Metat  St.  Chrysostom,  (called 
by  the  Abyssiuians  Afawork,  meaning  "  gold  mouth") 
He  asked  me  about  the  leviathan  and  behemoth,  men- 
tioned in  the  Book  of  Job ;  about  our  bishops ;  the 
journey  to  Cairo ;  and  the  children  of  Ham,  &c. 

I  then  called  upon  Alaca  Wolda  Serat,  Ayto  Wolda 
Georgis,  and  Arkadis.  Before  leaving  the  latter,  I 
asked  about  the  mountains  of  Bulga,  which  are  seen 
from  that  place.  One  high  mountain  is  called  !Magus- 
as;  another  is  called  Fantalh;  and  the  name  of  an 
other  AVosile.  In  the  evening  I  sent  a  copy  of  the  Psalms 
to  the  Alaca  of  Tecla  Haimanot.  The  Lord  be  praised 
for  giving  me  daily  an  opportunity  of  spreading  the 
good  seed  of  His  AA'ord  ! 

August  27 — Johanes,  who  was  formerly  a  Mahom- 


edan,     told    us  this    morning,    that    the    King    had 
cut    off   the  nice    binding  of   the    books,  which   we 
gave    him    at    our    first    meeting  with  him,    to    use 
for  another  pm-pose.     We  do  not  think,  however,  that 
it  is  true.     The  people  of  Shoa,  like  those  of  Tigre, 
do  not  like  the  Amharic  very  much,  but  prefer  the 
iEthiopic.  We  endeavour  to  prove,  that  as  the  Amharic 
is  the  language  of  the  country,  and  as  the  ^thiopic  re- 
quires a  long  study,  the  Amharic  is  much  more  prefer- 
able   to    an  unknown  language.     We  refer  them   to 
1  Cor.  xiv.,  where  St.  Paul  is  speaking  about  the  use- 
lessness  of  speaking  in  an  unknown  tongue.     Finally, 
we  say,  that  the  iEthiopic  is  a  translation  like    the 
Amharic,  which  has  its  preference  in  so  far  as  it  is 
corrected  in  conformity  with  the  Hebrew;  while  the 
iEthiopic  translation  is  made  according  to  the  Septua- 
gint.      Perhaps  it  would  be  expedient,  if   the  Bible 
Society  would  print  the  ^thiopic  and  Amharic  in  one 
volume,  in  the    same  way  as  they  have    printed   the 
Ancient   and   Modern   Greek   New  Testament,  in  one 
volume,  in  two  opposite  columns.     I  wish  that  we  were 
in  possession  of  a  quantity  of  ^thiopic  New  Testa- 
ments.     This  morning  Alaca  Wolda   Serat  proposed 
to  me  to  change  the  works  of  St.   Chrysostom  for  a 
copy  of  the  New  Testament  in  iEthiopic.     At  Angol- 
lala,  I   offered  to  him  a  copy    of  the  Amharic  New 
Testament ;  but  he  refused  to  accept  it,  asking  for  the 
^thiopic.     It  always  makes  a  painful   impression   on 
our  mind  if  the  people,  and  particularly  the  fii'st  digni- 


taries  of  cliui'ches,  refuse  to  accept  the   Holy   Scrip- 

August  28, 1839 — To-day  a  priest  ofBulga  called  on 
us.  He  said,  that  there  was  a  large  river,  called  Kassam, 
in  the  neighbourhood  of  Bulga ;  and  that  it  flows  into  the 
Hawash.  The  name  of  the  Governor  of  Bulga  is  Berkie, 
who  resides  at  Merfata.  As  there  were  about  fifteen 
persons  with  us,  I  read  j\Iatt.  xxiii.  with  them,  and 
afterward  the  Catechism,  with  which  they  were  well 

August  29 — To-day  is  the  feast  of  Tecla  Haima- 
not.  The  memory  of  this  Saint  is  celebrated  three 
times  in  the  year.  In  the  month  of  December,  the 
memory  of  his  birth  is  celebrated ;  in  August,  his 
death ;  and  in  May,  his  ascension.  The  people  of  Shoa 
say,  that  there  is  a  well,  called  Tabal,  by  drinking  the 
water  of  which  sick  persons  are  restored  to  health. 
Tecla  Haimanot,  they  say,  opened  this  well;  the  arch- 
angel ^lichael,  who  was  his  Mediator  with  God,  having 
she^\Ti  him  where  the  well  was.  On  this  day,  the  King 
gives  money  and  salt  to  the  poor,  and  mules  to  those  who 
cannot  walk,  in  memory  of  Tecla  Haimanot,  who  cured 
cripples  and  other  sick  men.  AMien  they  go  to  Debra 
Libanos,  they  bring  back  dust  from  his  grave,  making 
on  his  feast  a  cross  with  it  on  the  forehead.  They  say, 
too,  that  this  dust  is  good  in  many  cases  of  sickness. 

August  31 — There  being  about  eight  scholars  here, 
I  read  with  them  in  the  Gospel  of  St.  John.  In  the 
afternoon,  I  went  to  see  Wolda  Hanna,  who  wished  to 


learn  the  English  Language.  AYe  had  a  conversation 
about  Geography.  When  1  left  him,  he  asked  about 
our  necessaries,  sajang,  he  would  send  bread  and  wine  if 
we  were  in  want  of  them.  I  should  be  very  glad  if  I 
had  a  better  knowledge  of  the  Amharic  Language ;  but  I 
hope,  with  the  assistance  of  God,  to  improve  it  every 
day.  Mr.  Isenberg  has  finished  his  Geography,  which 
he  began  to  write  at  Angollala.  He  intends  to  write 
a  brief  Universal  History.  A  Spelling-book  was  com- 
posed by  him  at  Angollala.  We  have  made  copies  of 
those  works  written  by  Abyssinians. 

Sept.  1,  1839.  Lord's  Day — I  went  veiy  early  this 
morning  to  the  Church  of  St.  Michael.  TheAlaca,  Wolda 
Mariam,  on  seeing  me,  requested  me  to  take  a  seat  by 
his  side.  I  gave  him  a  copy  of  the  New  Testament  in 
Amharic^  with  which  he  was  much  pleased,  asking  at 
the  same  time,  whether  I  had  none  in  ^Ethiopic. 
Observing  him  wondering  at  the  nice  binding  of  the 
book,  I  took  the  opportunity  to  speak  to  him  about 
the  blessings  contained  in  it ;  and  then  briefly  related 
to  him  the  history  of  the  Reformation,  showing  him 
that  our  forefathers  were  in  as  much  darkness  as  the 
Abyssinians  are  at  present,  and  how  they  were 
delivered  from  it  by  the  light  of  the  AA'ord  of  God ;  and 
finally,  I  spoke  to  him  about  the  worldly  blessings 
which  we  have  enjoyed  since  the  time  of  the  Reforma- 
tion of  our  churches.  I  have  much  hope  that  they 
will  allow  us  to  preach  in  their  churches  :  for  the  pre- 
sent, however,  I   endeavour  to  make  my  acquaintance 

ST.  MICHAEL  AND  ST.  GEORGE.       105 

with  them.  I  went  afterward  to  the  Church  of  Tccla 
Haimanot  in  Aferbeini.  As  the  service  was  finished,  I 
called  upon  Alaca  Guebra  Selassie. 

Sept.  4 — Two  monks  came  to-day  begging  for 
clothes.  Mr.  Isenberg  spoke  with  them  about  monkery- 
being  inconsistent  with  the  original  institution  of  matri- 
mony, Gen.  ii. — of  labour.  Gen.  iii.  One  of  the  monks 
has  been  at  Axuca,  where  he  had  received  a  copy  of  the 
Psalms  from  our  servant  Kidan  Mariam.  We  are  glad 
to  find  that  our  books  are  spread  over  a  large  por- 
tion of  Abyssinia. 

Sept.  5 — It  rained  very  much  to-day.  In  the  even- 
ing I  went  to  the  Church  of  St.  George,  to  see  the 
books  belonging  to  that  Church.  Afterward,  a  Debtera 
came  asking  about  the  polygamy  of  the  Mahomedans. 
I  directed  him  to  the  institution  of  God,  Gen.  ii. ;  and 
the  confirmation  of  that  by  Christ,  Matt.  xix.  4,  5., 
asking  him,  whether  we  should  follow  the  error  of  the 
^Mahomedans,  or  the  Word  of  God  ? 

Se2')t.  7 — About  eight  persons  were  here  this  morn- 
ing. An  Alaca  of  Machala  Wans  begged  for  medicine. 
I  asked  him  about  the  names  of  the  parts  of  the 
Abyssinian  churches.  The  first  place,  at  the  entrance,  is 
called  Kenie  Maalti,  where  the  boys  in  singing  and  other 
people  stand.  The  second  place  is  called  Kediste,  the 
place  of  the  priests ;  the  third  is  called  Keduta 

A  relation  of  the  King's  came  begging  for  medicine. 
The  name  of  the  King's  mother  is  Senania  Work-  rain 

F  5 


of  gold — She  resides  at  Selat  Dingai,  iu  the  neighbour- 
hood of  Tegulet. 

Sejyt.  9^  1839 — I  read  this  morning  Acts  viii.  to  a  blind 
man,  explaining  to  him  the  mind  of  Simon  the  sor- 
cerer, and  the  sincere  mind  of  the  Eunuch. 

Sept.  10 — This  is  the  last  day  of  the  Abyssinian  year. 
Our  boy,  Guebra  Georgis,  spoke  this  evening  about 
Theodorus,  who,  in  the  opinion  of  the  Abyssinians,  is 
the  Apostle  John,  who  shall  come  at  his  time  to  rule 
all  Jerusalem. 

Sept.  11 — To-day  the  new  year  of  the  Abyssinians 
begins.  They  count  now  7332  in  their  chronology.  I 
went  to  the  Church  of  St.  George,  ha\'ing  been  in- 
formed that  a  priest  would  give  a  speech  in  Amharic. 
As  I  arrived  too  early,  I  went  away.  Mr.  Isenberg 
went  afterward  to  hear  the  speech,  and  came  back 
much  distressed  about  the  nonsense  he  had  heard.  The 
speech  was  taken  from  the  books  of  Sena  Fetrat  and 
Amada  Mistir,  being  written  in  Amharic. 

In  the  afternoon  a  Debtera,  Guebra  Mariam,  called 
upon  us.  On  asking  where  he  was  born,  he  replied, 
that  he  was  from  the  isle  of  Haig,  which  is  in  a  large 
lake  in  the  country  of  the  Galla  tribe,  the  name  of 
which  is  Tehuladere,  in  the  north  of  Shoa.  On  this 
island  there  are  about  a  hundred  houses,  and  a  monas- 
tery, where  wives  are  not  admitted :  they  live  at  some 
distance  from  the  monastery.  The  island  is  eight  days 
jpm-ney  from  Ankobar.  Foreigners  who  wish  to  enter 
Shoa,  are  compelled  to  wait  in  the  neighbourhood  of 


this  late,  for  orders  from  the  King  of  Shoa.  The  name 
of  the  Governor  of  Tehviladere  is  Ali  Marie,  who  is  de- 
pendant on  Has  Ali  at  Gondar,  and  who  is  at  present  at 
war  with  Beroo  of  Argobba. 

The  priest  of  Gurague  came  this  evening,  asking  for 
a  definitive  answer,  whether  I  would  go  with  him  to 
his  country.  I  answered  in  the  negative,  though  I 
was  much  inclined  to  go  mth  him,  and  I  intend  to  do 
so  in  the  month  of  December. 

The  Galla  Tribes  in  the  south  of  Gurague  are  the 
following:  l.Wudass;  2.  Mai ;  3.  Abboso;  4.  Abo- 
sitsho ;  5.  Masso ;  6.  Lellon ;  7.  Imer;  8.  Fullo ; 
8.  Banoso;  9.  Falandoso;  10.  Mirrer.  The  Go- 
vernor of  the  town  sent  a  sheep  to  us  this  evening. 

Sept.  13' — This  afternoon  the  priest  Sawold,  who 
delivered  an  Amharic  speech  on  the  morning  of  the 
new  year,  called  upon  us.  He  is  one  of  the  most 
learned  Abyssinians  I  have  seen ;  but  he  is  veiy  proud. 
He  turned  the  conversation  to  Chronology,  saying,  that 
the  Abyssinians  had  seven  chronologies.  I  afterward 
went  to  Alaca  Wolda  Hana,  who  is  sick. 

Sept.  15 — The  above  mentioned  priest,  Sawold, 
called  upon  us  again,  and  turned  the  conversation  to 
Chronology,  as  he  had  done  on  his  first  visit.  When 
we  said,  that  we  had  a  firm  basis  for  our  Chronology  in 
the  5th  chapter  of  Genesis  and  other  parts  of  the  Old 
Testament,  he  said  that  the  Jews  had  altered  the 
Scriptures — an  opinion  which  I  had  never  heard  from 
an  Abyssinian — and  therefore  we  could  not  rely  upon 


the  Hebrew.  We  said  that  we  did  not  expect  that  he 
would  speak  in  favour  of  the  JMahomedans,  who  also 
say  that  the  Jews  and  Christians  had  altered  the  Scrip- 
tures. We  then  endeavoured  to  prove  that  the  Jews 
did  not  alter  the  Old  Testament^  else  they  would  have 
first  altered  the  prophecies  referring  to  Christ ;  and 
further^  that  the  Jews  had  numbered  the  letters^  and 
were  very  anxious  to  keep  the  genuine  text  of  Scrip- 
ture. The  conversation  then  turned  to  Cyi'illus,  Leon, 
Diosceurus,  and  other  distinguished  men  in  the  Church 
at  their  times.  Finally,  the  priest  spoke  of  the  births 
of  Christ,  and  the  late  Abuna,  Cyi'illus,  whom  they  con- 
sider like  an  angel  in  heaven. 

Sept.  16,  1839 — The  priest  of  Gurague  came  again.  I 
read  with  him  Matt.  v.  He  afterward  spoke  of  a  kind 
of  lion  in  his  country,  which  is  called  Dib  Anbasa. 
He  added,  that  nobody  had  seen  him ;  but  that  when 
speaking  of  a  strong  man,  they  compare  him  with  the 
Dib  Anbasa.  Another  priest,  born  at  Fintsha,  the 
capital  city  of  the  province  of  Kuara,  in  the  west  "of 
Dembea,  called  on  us.  I  asked  him  about  the  people 
dwelling  on  the  sources  of  the  Nile — which  the  Abys- 
sinians  call  Abai — whether  they  were  Christians  or  hea- 
thens. He  said  that  they  were  Christians.  I  asked 
him  why  they  sacrificed  to  the  Nile  ;  to  which  he  replied, 
that  it  was  a  custom  in  Abyssinia  to  sacrifice  cows, 
sheep,  &c.,  in  cases  of  sickness  and  or  bad  times.  It 
is  a  fact,  that  the  Abyssinians  have  this  custom ;  and 
therefore  we  may  doubt  the  statement  of  Mr.  Bruce  that 


they  are  heathens.  However,  I  suspend  my  judgment  for 
the  present.  This  priest  also  spoke  in  high  terms  of 
Gutho,  the  Governor  of  Damot,  who  is  in  friendship 
with  the  King  of  Shoa.  Mr.  D'Abadie  is  with  him  at 
present.  By  his  means  a  traveller  could  get  great  as- 
sistance in  going  to  Caffa  and  Enarea.  When  the 
priest  left  Gondar,  Ras  Ali  had  turned  Mahomedan ;  but 
as  his  governors,  priests,  and  monks,  protested  against 
this  step,  he  was  obliged  to  return  to  the  Christian 

In  the  afternoon  a  man  came  begging  for  medicine. 
I  was  just  reading  Rev.  i.  with  another  man.  When 
I  had  read  some  verses  and  spoke  a  little  about  it,  he 
said,  "  It  is  enough  :  I  have  not  come  to  you  to  learn, 
but  to  ask  for  medicine."  Afterward  an  Alaca  came, 
whose  name  is  AVolda  Tesfa.  He  was  formerly  the 
Alaca  of  St.  Gabriel,  at  Adowah  ;  but  being  an  adherent 
to  the  party  of  the  three  births  of  Christ,  he  was 
expelled  from  Adowah.  He  begged  us  to  give  him 
medicine.  It  is  grievous  to  say,  that  the  greater  part 
of  the  people  who  come  to  us,  seek  only  help  for  the 
body.  When  they  come,  they  say  that  they  long  for 
instruction ;  but  having  got  medicine,  they  do  not  con- 
cern themselves  for  instruction.  When  I  think  on  their 
disingenuousness,  I  have  little  hope  of  a  good  success 
of  our  work  among  this  people,  and  my  mind  turns  to 
the  heathen  Gallas.  Enarea  is  said  to  be  beyond  the 
countiy   of  Sidama.     Sidama  means,  in  the  Galla  Ian- 


guage,  "  a  Christian."    That  country  is  said   to  be  on 
the  way  to  Enarea. 

Sept.  17, 1839 — Several  priests  asked  us  whether  the 
Abuna  had  yet  arrived  from  Cairo.  We  answered  in 
the  negative.  There  are  several  causes  which  prevent  the 
Abyssinians  from  getting  an  Abuna.  The  Governors 
of  Tigre  and  Amhara  are  at  present  in  the  possession 
of  the  lands  belonging  to  the  Abuna,  which,  should  he 
come,  they  would  be  obliged  to  deliver  to  him.  Another 
cause  is,  that  the  Abyssinians  are  at  variance  with 
each  other.  The  people  of  Gondar  defend  the  opinion  of 
the  three  births  of  Christ,  which  opinion  the  people  of 
Tigre  oppose.  The  Abuna  of  Tigre  is  therefore  not 
acknowledged  at  Gondar,  and  vice  versa.  The  Abuna 
Cyi-illus,  who  defended  two  births,  was  expelled  from 

In  the  afternoon,  several  persons  came  to  see  my 
watch,  of  which  they  had  heard  from  others,  consider- 
ing it  as  a  wonder.  I  said,  that  it  was  their  time  to  con- 
vert their  minds  to  Christ.  Heb.  iv.  A  priest  spoke 
about  a  book,  the  title  of  which  is  "  Iscander."  We  sup- 
pose it  is  a  translation  from  the  Arabic.  Then  he  spoke 
about  the  books  of  Dionysius  Areopagita.  Mr.  Isen- 
berg  proved  to  him,  that  it  was  an  error  to  ascribe  those 
books  to  Dionysius,  mentioned  Acts  xvii.  Our  Workie 
told  us  this  evening  of  a  large  city  on  the  side  of  the 
river  Mareb,  in  the  country  of  the  Shangallas,  the 
name  of  which  is  Maidaro. 

Sept.  19 — Alaca  Wolda  Tesfa  called  upon  us  this 


afternoon.  We  asked  him  about  the  following  strange 
story,  which  our  Workie  had  related  to  us  the  day 
before.  The  Abuua,  Christodoulusj  at  the  time  of 
King  Nabla  Denghel,  had  reprimanded  the  people 
of  the  Fetshoos  on  account  of  their  \dciousness.  Ex- 
asperated at  this,  they  thought  in  revenge  to  defame 
him.  At  fii'st  they  brought  the  servants  of  the  Abuna 
over  to  their  side.  Then  they  slaughtered  a  child, 
which  they  presented  at  table  to  the  Abuna  and  the 
King,  who  were  sitting  together  :  one  hand  of  the  child 
was  still  to  be  seen  in  its  natural  state.  The  Abuna 
was  astonished  at  the  sight,  and  the  King  asked,  whe- 
ther such  was  the  usual  meat  in  that  house.  He  was 
answered  in  the  affirmative.  He  then  said,  "  From 
henceforth  slaughtering  and  blood-shedding  shall  have 
no  end  in  yom*  country."  Therefore,  they  are  called  Fet- 
shoo,  that  is — his  hand.  The  Abuna  is  said  to  have 
raised  the  child  from  the  dead,  to  bear  witness  to  his 

Sept.  20 — This  morning,  about  seven  o'clock,  we 
set  out  from  Ankobar,  and  arrived  at  Debra  Berhan 
about  two  o'clock  in  the  afternoon.  Several  days  ago  we 
had  intended  to  go  ;  but  the  people  of  the  King  refused 
to  give  us  our  mules,  till  they  had  received  definitive 
orders  from  the  King  to  deliver  them  up  to  us.  Hav- 
ing arrived  at  Debra  Berhan,  we  were  conducted  to  a 
broken  tent  though  much  rain  was  falling. 

Sejit.  21 — This  morning  Beru,  the  King's  boy, 
came  to  our  tent,   saying,  that  the  King  had  been  in- 

112  VISIT    TO    TEGULET. 

formed  of  our  arrival  yesterday  evening  veiy  late.  We 
begged  the  King,  through  Beru^  to  allow  us  to  have 
an  interview  with  him,  in  order  that  we  might  com- 
municate to  him  our  business.  At  the  same  time,  we 
made  him  acquainted  with  Mr.  Isenberg's  intention  of 
returning  to  Egypt  and  Europe.  Beru  immediately 
retm'ned,  bringing  with  him  a  sheep  and  some  bread 
from  the  King.  The  King  expressed  his  regret  at  Mr. 
Isenberg's  going  so  soon.  As  it  rained  much,  we  asked 
for  a  house,  which  was  given  us  by  the  people  of  Serta 
Wold,  whose  duty  it  is  to  take  care  of  foreigners. 

Sept.  23,  1839 — This  morning  we  met  with  the  King. 
He  was  willing  to  let  Mr.  Isenberg  go.  We  then  told 
him,  that  I  wished  to  remain  here,  and  in  course  of 
time  to  go  the  Gallas,  to  preach  the  Gospel  to  them. 
He  answered,  "  That  \\dll  not  do :  the  GaUas  will  kill 
you.''  The  people  of  Shoa  attempted  to  convert  these 
heathens  by  means  of  war  and  magic  sentences ;  but 
they  refused  to  accept  the  Christian  faith. 

Sept.  25 — This  morning,  about  seven  o'clock,  I 
set  out  from  Debra  Berhan  to  visit  Tegulet,  the  an- 
cient capital  city  of  Shoa,  and  a  river  called  Salatsha, 
which  flows  at  the  foot  of  the  mountain  on  which 
Tegulet  is  built.  I  went  in  an  easterly  direction,  and 
came  to  a  mountain,  where  a  steep  way  conducted  me 
into  the  dale  where  the  river  flows.  Having  arrived 
at  the  river,  I  could  not  find  a  way  to  ascend  the 
mountain  on  which  Tegulet  is  built,  though  I  could 
see  very  well  the  place  where  the  city  was.     At  pre- 


sent  there  is  a  village  there,  called  Etake.  I  saw  a 
large  wall,  a  work  of  old,  which  connects  the  village 
with  a  neighbouring  mountain.  In  the  midst  of  the 
wall  is  a  large  opening. 

Sept.  26 — This  day  we  saw  the  King's  soldiers  ex- 
ercised, which  takes  place  every  year  at  the  time  of 
Mascal — a  feast  in  memory  of  the  invention  of  the 
cross.  About  nine  o'clock  we  were  called  to  the 
King.  He  was  sitting  at  the  entrance  of  his  house 
surrounded  by  a  number  of  his  governors.  AYe  were 
ordered  to  take  our  seats  by  them.  A  number  of  sol- 
diers then  appeared,  having  in  their  hands  a  bushel  of 
s^\'itches,  on  the  top  of  which  a  bundle  of  flowers  was 
bound.  A  horseman  rode  up  and  down  several  times 
before  then*  front,  who  at  last  cast  down  his  two  lances 
on  the  ground,  and  in  the  same  moment  all  cast  away 
their  switches.  The  ceremony  was  then  finished.  The 
King  then  ascended  a  balcony,  which  had  been 
erected  several  days  before.  Having  waited  a  little, 
we  were  called  to  take  our  seats  in  the  balcony  with 
the  governors  and  other  favourites  of  the  King.  The 
King  was  sitting  in  a  small  cabinet  erected  on  the 
balcony,  his  favourite  governors  sitting  at  his  side. 
These  are  Maratsh  and  Tshitshigoo.  Then  the  respec- 
tive governors,  with  their  troops  firing  guns,  defiled 
before  the  King,  on  a  large  meadow-gi'ound.  About 
6,000  men  defiled  before  the  King.  About  two  o'clock 
we  retired  to  our  house. 



Sept.  27,  1839 — The  King  liaving  sent  us  word,  that 
we  should  go  with  him  to  Angollala,  I  resolved  on  re- 
turning to  Ankobar.  Mr.  Isenberg  followed  the  King 
to  Augollala,  in  order  to  take  leave  of  him.  I  arrived 
at  Ankobar  about  three  o'clock  in  the  afternoon.  On 
entering  the  town,  I  was  stopped  by  the  people  of  the 
Governor,  to  wait  for  orders  from  him.  I  went  on  my 
way,  however,  knowing  that  the  King  had  given  no 
orders  to  prevent  my  entering  the  town.  A  gi*eat  num- 
ber of  those  who  had  visited  us  before  for  instruction, 
came  to  ask  how  I  did,  and  whether  we  were  all  well. 
SejJt.  28 — Mr.  Isenberg  arrived  this  morning  at 
Ankobar.     He  brought  me  the  news,  that  a  messenger 


has  arrived  from  Adowali,  informing  the  King  of  the 
arrival  of  fom*  Eui-opeans,  who  wished  to  come  to  Shoa. 
The  same  messenger  brought  the  news,  that  Oobieh,  the 
Zetshesmatsh  of  Tigre,  had  put  Cassai,  the  son  of  Sa- 
bagadis,  in  fetters. 

Sept.  30 — Since  the  people  have  learned  that  j\Ir. 
Isenberg  intends  to  leave  Shoa,  they  have  come  in 
numbers  begging  for  medicine.  This  morning  one  of 
our  copyists  came  asking  medicine  for  a  monk.  Mr. 
Isenberg  took  the  opportunity  to  speak  to  him  about 
monkery.  The  rainy  season  seems  to  be  coming  again, 
it  having  rained  very  much  for  the  last  few  days.  Sa- 
wold  repeated  his  visit  to  us,  and  turned  the  conversa- 
tion again  to  the  subject  of  Chronology.  In  the  even- 
ing the  son  of  Alaca  Wolda  Serat  came  begging  us  to 
teach  him  Geogi-aphy.  Several  boys  and  priests  were 
here.  I  have  finished  with  Guebra  Georgis,  the  Geogra- 
phy, and  in  the  Universal  Histoiy  I  have  proceeded  as 
far  as  the  time  of  the  Reformation.  I  have  also  read 
with  him  the  Gospels  of  St.  INIatthew,  Mark,  and  Luke. 

October  1 — Very  early  this  morning,  the  son  of 
Alaca  Wolda  Serat  came.  I  began  to  instruct  him  in 
Geography.  Afterward,  the  son  of  the  Alaca  of 
Aferbeini  came,  bringing  the  Psalms  I  had  sent 
him,  saying,  that  the  Alaca  wished  for  something 
greater  than  that,  of  which  he  would  inform  to  us.  We 
sent  him  word,  that  it  caused  us  much  pain  to  see 
those,  whose  duty  it  was  to  teach  others,  not  like  the 
Word  of  God.     He  went  away ;  but  returned  in  the  af- 

116  ACCOUNT   OF   A 

ternoorij  sa}dug,  that  we  should  not  be  offended,  as  the 
Alaca  had  ah'eady  received  a  copy  of  the  Psalms  from  a 
monk  who  got  it  at  Axum,  and  was  not  in  want  of  ano- 
ther ;    but  that  he  would  be  glad  of  a  New  Testament. 

Our  Workie  asked  us,  whether  we  knew  anything 
of  the  traveller  Arada,  who  came  to  Abyssinia,  and 
having  travelled  in  so  many  other  countries,  be- 
came a  proverb  in  Abyssinia  ;  as  for  instance,  Ras 
Michael  having  returned  with  his  troops  to  Gondar 
from  the  country  of  the  Gooderoos,  said,  "  We  have 
travelled  like  Ai-ada/' 

This  evening  we  witnessed  a  very  mournful  cere- 
mony. A  woman  in  our  house,  the  wife  of  a  man  from 
Gurague,  began  suddenly  to  sing.  At  first  we  did 
not  listen  to  her ;  but  several  times  repeating  her 
song,  we  asked  what  it  was.  Guebra  Georgis  told  us, 
that  she  wished  to  expel  the  bad  spirits  which  she  im- 
agined would  inflict  her  with  sickness.  In  singing  she 
repeated  the  words ;  "Lamana  saijasu  gena" — a  prayer 
before  the  bad  spirits  are  seizing  me.  Having  finished 
her  song,  she  smoked  for  a  few  minutes,  and  then  sung 
again  ;  which  having  done  she  moved  her  head  in  every 
direction.  I  went  to  her,  and  asked  what  she  was 
doing.  At  first  I  thought  that  she  was  out  of  her 
senses,  as  she  gave  me  no  answer.  Mr.  Isenberg,  who 
was  rather  unwell  to-day,  also  came  to  see  her.  He 
asked  her,  whether  she  was  in  the  service  of  Satan  ? 
But  she  continued  her  idolatrous  ceremony.  The 
people  standing  by  brought  her  a  red  hen,  which  she 


kissed  and  put  on  her  neck  ;  but  the  hen  of  course  did 
not  stay  there.  She  then  moved  her  head  again  and 
changed  her  clothes.  Mr.  Isenberg  again  spoke  to  her 
about  her  sinful  performances.  We  were  about  to  leave 
her,  when  she  said,  "  ]May  God  come  upon  you,  that 
you  came  to  me.^'  Mr.  Isenberg  replied,  "  How  do 
you  know  God,  as  you  serve  the  false  god  like  the 
heathens  ?^'  We  then  returned  to  our  room,  and  asked 
om*  boy  about  the  meaning  of  the  ceremony,  when  he 
gave  us  the  following  particulars.  The  Gallas  and  all 
of  the  people  of  Gurague  and  Shoa,  who  are  smokers, 
beUeve  that  there  are  eighty-eight  spirits,  which  they 
call  Sarotsh — in  the  singular,  Sar — These  spirits  are 
said  to  walk  about  and  inflict  men  with  sickness ;  and 
hence,  when  such  persons  feel  sick,  they  take  their 
refuge  in  superstitious  means.  By  smoking  and  sing- 
ing, moving  then-  body,  and  particularly  by  offering  a 
hen  to  the  Sar,  they  imagine  that  they  can  frighten 
away  the  bad  spirit  and  secm-e  themselves  against  being 
sick.  The  Sarotsh  are  divided  into  two  parties,  each 
having  its  Alaca  or  head.  One  iVlaca  is  called  Mama, 
who  has  forty-fom*  Sarotsh  under  his  command  :  the 
name  of  the  other  Alaca  is  Warrer,  and  has  the  same 
number  of  Sarotsh  under  him.  Each  Sar  has  a  par- 
ticular name.  When  persons  perform  such  a  ceremony, 
they  speak  in  another  language.  Thus,  for  instance, 
they  call  a  hen,  "  Tshari" — in  the  Amharic,  a  hen  is 
called  Doro.  The  hen  is  afterward  slaughtered  and 
eaten  by  the  assistants,  except  the   brains,  which  are 

118  REMARKS   ON 

only  eaten  by  the  person  who  has  performed  the  most 
part.  In  choosmg  a  hen  they  prefer  a  red  one.  The 
King  has  given  orders  to  abolish  this  heathenish  cus- 
tom, and  the  priests  have  forbidden  the  people  to  smoke, 
having  observed  that  all  smokers  are  fond  of  this 

These  proceedings  characterize  very  much  the  Chris- 
tians of  Abyssinia.  They  mix  all  together — Chris- 
tianity, Judaism,  IMahomedanism,  and  Heathenism. 
The  ceremony  just  mentioned  is  common  to  them,  as 
well  as  the  Gallas ;  and  the  opinion  of  the  above  men- 
tioned priest,  respecting  the  interpolations  of  Scripture 
made  by  the  Jews,  is  evidently  a  Mahomedan  doctrine. 
Their  distinctions  of  clean  and  unclean  food,  and  the 
use  of  circumcision,  as  well  as  many  other  ceremonies, 
are  clear  evidences  of  a  mixture  with  Judaism.  We 
cannot  expect  a  better  state  of  religion  among  them, 
inasmuch  as  a  string  of  silk  put  around  their  necks 
as  a  sign  of  their  Christianity — mortification  of  their 
flesh  by  much  fasting — a  strict  separation  from  Maho- 
medans  by  not  eating  with  them — their  kissing 
churches  —  imploring  Saints  —  disputing  about  the 
births  of  Christ — pilgrimages  to  Jerusalem,  or  to  the 
grave  of  Tecla  Haimanot — all  these  things  together 
cannot  change  their  hearts,  nor  secure  them  against  the 
inroads  of  Satan.  The  priests,  instead  of  conducting 
the  people  to  Christ,  assume  the  lordship  over  them, 
engrossing  their  attention  with  vain  fables  and  stories 
of  saints,  to  whom   they  direct  them  for  refuge    as 


their  Saviours.  Hence  ignorance,  superstition^  fleshly 
sins,  particularly  fornication,  have  prevailed  among  the 
people ;  so  that  we  may  well  wonder  at  the  remnant  of 
Christianity  which  still  exists  in  this  country.  Who 
can  cure  the  wounds  of  Abyssinia,  but  the  Lord  by 
His  Spirit  and  His  Word  ?  To  give  them  His  Spirit  we 
are  unable ;  but  we  can  serve  them  by  supplying  them 
with  the  Word  of  God.  The  Holy  Scriptures  must 
not  only  be  laid  down  before  the  people,  but  they  must 
be  explained  to  them  by  word  and  by  writing ;  and  the 
youth  must  be  instructed  in  the  holy  truths  of  the 
Bible.  The  Lord  be  praised  that  He  has  enabled  us 
to  make  a  beginning,  though  a  small  one.  The  people 
know  distinctly  who  we  are,  and  why  we  have  come  to 
their  coimtry.  A  number  of  persons  have  heard  the 
sound  doctrines  of  the  Gospel,  by  reading  the  Scriptures 
and  conversation  with  them.  Mr.  Isenberg  has  endea- 
voured to  further  our  object,  partly  by  conversing  with 
the  people  who  came  to  us,  and  partly  by  preparing 
several  school-books,  which  I  could  make  use  of  after 
his  departure.  I  have,  on  my  part,  endeavoured,  be- 
sides the  iEthiopic  and  Amharic  studies,  to  read  with 
the  people  in  the  Holy  Scriptures,  in  reading  which  I 
have  got  as  far  as  the  first  Epistle  of  Paul  to  the 
Corinthians.  The  Lord  grant  that  the  number  of 
our  scholars  may  increase,  as  well  as  our  means  in 
receiving  a  great  quantity  of  books ;  but,  above  all, 
may  He  grant  that  we  may  be  filled  with  the  spirit  of 
faith,  love,  wisdom,  and  prayer  ! 

120  SLAVES    IN   THE    KING's   SERVICE. 

October  2,  1839 — To-day,  I  was  again  overrun  with 
patients.  Debtera  Gucbra  Selassieh  brought  his  wife 
as  a  patient.  This  woman  is  at  the  head  of  the  first 
class  of  the  royal  spinning  women,  who  are  two  hun- 
dred in  number,  and  have  to  spin  the  finer  cotton  for 
the  royal  cloth,  which  the  King  dresses  himself  and 
presents  to  his  friends,  ladies,  governors,  &c.  A  second 
class  of  spinning  women  are  four  hundred  in  number : 
these  spin  ordinary  cotton  for  soldiers  and  others.  All 
are  in  the  service  of  the  King,  and  seem  to  be  free.  I 
observe  this  circumstance  here,  because  there  are 
several  hundreds  of  slaves,  particularly  females,  at  each 
of  the  King's  residences  at  Ankobar,  Angollala,  Debra 
Berhan,  and  Kundy.  The  King's  grinding  women, 
for  instance,  at  Ankobar  are,  I  believe,  three  hundred 
in  number.  The  water  girls,  who  have  to  carry  all  the 
necessary  water  for  the  King's  household,  and  for 
foreigners  who  are  maintained  by  the  King,  are  more 
than  that  number :  his  female  cooks,  I  think,  are 
two  hundred.  He  has  also  some  hundreds  of  women  to 
prepare  beer  and  hydromel;  so  that  the  number  of 
female-slaves  at  Ankobar  only  in  the  King's  posses- 
sion exceeds  by  far  one  thousand.  A  large  number  of 
male-slaves  of  the  King  are  chiefly  employed  in  carry- 
ing wood.  The  number  of  slaves  at  each  of  the  three 
other  residences  is  not  quite  so  large  as  that  of  Anko- 
bar ;  but  there  are  many  hundreds  at  each.  They  are 
for  the  greater  part  from  Gurague  ;  others  are  Gallas, 
Shankelas ;    others   from  the   Zindjero  country ;  from 


Enarea  aucl  CafFa,  and  many  Abyssinians  from  Shoa, 
These  and  many  other  facts,  may  give  a  famt  idea  of 
what  remains  to  be  done  in  these  quarters  for  the  poor 
African  slaves. 

Religious  conversations  always  revert  to  the  wor- 
shipping of  saints^  fasting,  ceremonies,  &c.  To-day  I 
had  again  a  long  conversation  with  a  priest  of  St. 
George's,  and  some  other  persons  present,  which  began 
with  speaking  on  Tecla  Haimanot,  in  honour  of  whom 
four  annual  festivals  are  celebrated,  when  many  patients 
are  said  to  be  cured  from  various  diseases.  The  chief 
place  for  the  celebration  of  these  festivals  is  Debra 
Libanos,  where  there  seems  to  be  a  mineral  water, 
effectual  particularly  against  rheumatism,  paralysis, 
&c.  Tecla  Haimanot,  they  say,  on  arri^dng  there 
from  his  journey,  and  being  thirsty,  prayed  to  God  to 
open  a  fountain;  when,  through  the  agency  of  the 
archangel  Michael,  water  sprang  up  at  his  feet,  coming 
from  Jordan.  A\Tien  this  story  was  told  to  us  to- 
day, we  expressed  our  disbelief;  and  added,  that  we 
wanted  neither  true  nor  false  miracles,  as  the  mira- 
cles of  Christ  and  His  Apostles  were  quite  sufficient. 
A  long  conversation  then  ensued  on  the  worshipping 
of  saints,  when  we  laid  particular  stress  on  this 
point — that  every  honour  paid  to  the  creature,  which 
ascribed  to  it  some  share  in  the  working  out  our  salva- 
tion, and  implied  a  separation  of  Christ  from  His 
Church,  or  any  imperfection  of  His  work,  was  an  offence 
against  Christ. 


The  conversation  then  turned  to  the  relation  between 
clergy  and  laity  ;   when  they  were  told,  that  all  Chris- 
tians were  called  to  be  a  royal  priesthood  of  God — that 
priests  were   called  to  be,  not  Lords  over  the  faith  of 
believers,   but   helpers  of  their  jo?/— that  the   priest 
is  to  rank  above  the  congregation  in  knowledge  and 
experience,   in   order  to  shew  the  people   the  way  to 
Christ — that  the  people  must  themselves  go  to  Christ ; 
if  they  do  not,  the  priest  availed  them  nothing^ — and 
that  if  a  layman  be  taught  by  Christ  himself,  by  His 
Word   and  Spirit,    he  will    lack    nothing   on  account 
of  the  priest's  not  having  been  instrumental  in  bring- 
ing on  his  conversion.     They  were   fin-ther   told,  that 
where  a  work  of  God  is  going  on  in  the  minds  of  the 
people,  the  priest  is  not  to  interfere,  throwing  difficul- 
ties in  the  way  of  believers ;  that  he  has  only  to  ex- 
plain the  will  of  our  common  Lord  to  the  inquirer,  and 
to  assure  the  repenting  and  belie\ang  sinner  from  the 
Gospel,  that  his   salvation  has  been  wi'ought  out  by 
Christ;  and  that  when  saying,  Egziabeheryiftahh — (May 
God    absolve   thee— the   Abyssinian  form   of  Absolu- 
tion),   this  is  to  be  a  prayer,  not  a  magic  form  at  the 
command  of  the    priest;    for  the  keys  of  Da\dd  are 
in  the  hands  of  Christ,  and  to   His  Word,  priests  and 
laymen  are  alike  to  submit  themselves. 

This  afternoon  several  people  were  at  our  house, 
with  whom  I  conversed  about  our  Missionary  calling. 
The  subject  of  om-  conversation  had  previously  been 
on  the  nature  of  faith  and  justification  by  it ;  when  a 


brother  of  the  Alaca  of  St.  Michael  observed,  that  if 
we  continued  to  teach  in  this  manner,  a  blessing  would 
proceed  from  it  to  the  country,  for  the  people  would  be 
converted  from  their  sins ;  but  now  that  I  had  resolved 
to  go  away,  they  would  sink  back  into  theii'  darkness. 
I  replied,  that  if  they  really  loved  the  Word  of  God, 
they  would  apply  for  instruction  to  this  fountain  of 
wisdom  itself,  and  God  would  give  them  His  Spirit  to 
lead  them  to  Christ,  and  then  they  would  have  no 
occasion  for  our  assistance ;  but  that  if  they  had  occasion 
for  us  and  loved  us,  my  Brother  Krapf,  who  would  remain 
among  them,  and  who  daily  became  more  acquainted 
with  their  language,  would  instruct  them ;  and  that  our 
Society  also  would  send  other  brethren  to  fill  my  place, 
and  probably  I  should  again  come  myself.  They  com- 
mended our  disinterestedness  in  teaching  the  people, 
and  administering  medical  assistance  to  the  benefit 
of  many  gratuitously.  To  the  latter  point,  I,  in  a 
friendly  manner,  remarked,  that  although  we  did  not 
want  them  to  pay  us  for  any  assistance,  still  they  should 
not  desire  it  gratuitously,  because  Scripture  told  us 
that  the  labourer  is  worthy  oj  his  hire. 

Our  conversation  then  turned  on  the  distinction 
between  Mahomedans  and  Christians,  on  the  Mateb 
— a  blue  or  white  silk  or  cotton  cord,  which 
Christians  wear  round  their  neck — and  on  the  dis- 
tinction in  eating  and  drinking.  I  observed,  that  love 
was  the  distinguishing  mark  by  which  true  Christians 
were  known  from  other  men,  referring  to  the  words  of 

G  2 


Christy  John  xiii.  35.  '^It  is  true/'  said  one  of  tlie 
priests  of  St.  Michael's,  "  to  be  friendly  with  friends, 
and  to  good  to  the  poor  &c.,  is  the  first  duty  of  all 
Christians."  I  told  him,  that  this  was  not  sufficient ; 
and  put  the  question  to  him,  whether  if  he  loved  his 
friend,  it  was  not  because  his  friend  loved  him  ?  This 
he  could  not  deny.  I  then  showed,  him  that  in  thus 
loving  he  loved  his  own  self  only.  I  asked,  whether 
on  being  offended  by  any  person  he  did  not  become 
angry?  He  answered  in  the  affirmative.  I  then  proved 
how  this,  which  was  far  from  being  a  distinguishing 
mark  of  Christianity,  but  very  often  met  with  among 
heathen  and  Mahomedans,  was  not  real  love,  but 
selfishness;  in  contrast  to  which  I  endeavoured  then 
to  show  what  was  true  love,  namely,  loving  our  neigh- 
bour, without  distinguishing  between  friend  or  enemy, 
on  account  of  our  common  Creator  and  Redeemer,  love 
being  our  happy  duty  and  om-  second  nature ;  and  ob- 
served, that  though  love  was  in  its  expressions  affected 
by  the  different  characters  and  conduct  of  the  beloved 
objects,  it  was  not  disturbed  nor  destroyed  by  them. 
He  then  asked,  whether  in  our  country  there  was  no- 
thing like  hatred  and  enmity  ?  I  answered,  that  this 
question  was  not  now  a  proper  one ;  but  that  if  he 
saw  and  felt  the  truth  of  what  had  been  said,  he 
would  take  the  subject  into  serious  consideration,  and 
endeavour  himself  to  arrive  at  the  possession  of  such 
love  and  such  Christianity;  and  even  if  he  should 
happen  to  become  the  only  man  in  the  world  who  so 


loved ;  yea,  and  that  if  he  should  find,  that  myself,  who 
now  shewed  him  the  way,  did  not  live  according  to  it — 
for  which  I  should  be  very  sorry — this  was  to  be  no 
matter  to  him,  he  was  not  to  be  disturbed  by  it.  It 
was,  I  said,  a  sad  truth,  that  the  disciples  of  Christ 
lived  in  no  country  unmixed ;  but  that  there  were 
everj-where  true  and  false  Christians  mingled  together, 
not  excepting  our  own  country.  He  was  glad  at  hearing 
this,  and  said,  "  Then  it  is  there  as  it  is  with  us."  I 
told  him  not  to  be  glad,  because,  as  I  had  said,  it  was 
a  sad  truth ;  nor  to  rejoice  too  soon,  for  perhaps  in  no 
other  country  was  there  so  little  of  true  Christianity 
as  in  Abyssinia. 

October  3, 1839 — To-day  we  learned,  that  Wulasma 
]\Iahomed  had  passed  by  this  town  on  his  way  to 

Two  Abyssinians,  Debtera  Hailoo,  father  of  our 
scholar  Guebra  Georgis,  and  one  of  our  copyists,  reques- 
ted me  to  take  them  with  me  to  oui*  country.  I  had 
asked  Hailoo  to  send  his  son  with  me ;  to  which  he 
replied,  that  he  should  be  glad  to  accompany  me  him- 
self ;  and  if  I  would  allow  this,  I  could  take  his  son 
also ;  but  that  he  could  not  part  with  his  son.  I  could 
not  comply  with  his  request,  because  Hailoo  is  married. 
The  copyist  said,  that  he  had  a  strong  desire  to  see 
our  country,  and  he  was  not  bound  by  any  tie  to  his  own 
country.  I  asked  him,  whether  he  could  spend  1000 
dollars  for  such  a  journey.  He  answered,  that  he 
could  not  spend  ten   dollars.     When  I  told  him,  that 


travelling  was  so  expensive,  lie  asked,  whetlier  our 
people  did  not  forward  a  poor  traveller  "  Meente 
Maryan,"  (for  Mary's  sake.)  I  told  him,  that  they 
did  not  understand  the  Abyssinian  language  in  oiu' 
country.  He  replied,  that  he  would  apply  to  the 
study  of  our  language ;  and  asked,  whether  they 
would  not  for  the  sake  of  the  Virgin  forward  him  on 
his  journey.  I  said  that  they  would,  if  he  could  prove 
to  our  people  that  Mary  had  sent  him,  which  he  could 

October  4,  1839— Priest  Abba  Tseddoo  gave  us  this 
evening  some  details  concerning  the  government,  disci- 
pline, and  usages  of  their  Church. 

Government. — The  number  of  priests  and  deacons 
which  are  thought  necessary  for  each  Church,  is  twenty  ; 
one  third  of  whom  have  to  officiate  during  one  week, 
while  the  other  two  thirds  rest.  There  are,  however, 
few  Churches  at  present  in  this  kingdom  which  pos- 
sess the  full  number,  owing  to  the  want  of  an  Abuna, 
or  Bishop,  for  the  last  eleven  years,  to  ordain  priests 
and  deacons  ;  so  that  there  are  many  Churches  which 
have  been  shut  for  want  of  priests.  During  the  week 
the  priests  officiate,  they  live  apart  from  their  families. 
Each  priest  has  got  a  number  of  spiritual  children. 
In  one  sense,  all  those  who  are  imder  his  clerical  care 
as  penitents,  to  whom  he  administers  absolution  and 
sacrament,  are  his  spiritual  children ;  but  more  strictly, 
the  bovs  who  go  to  him  to  be  instructed,  and 
entrust  themselves  to  his  special  clerical  care,  are  called 


his  spiritual  sons.  At  the  commencement  of  their  ward- 
ship, they  solemnly  promise,  that  they  will  obey 
their  priests,  observe  all  the  usages  prescribed  by  the 
Chm-ch,  (and,  Abba  Tseddoo  said,  the  Word  of  God,) 
give  alms  to  friars,  to  the  poor,  the  widows  and  orphans  ; 
and  frequently  take  the  Lord's  Supper.  In  this  manner 
they  remain  with  the  priest  for  several  years,  and  then 
they  decide  whether  they  will  marry ;  and,  if  so,  whe- 
ther they  will  devote  themselves  to  the  priesthood  or 
not,  or  whether  they  give  themselves  to  the  monastic 
life.  If  they  intend  to  marry,  the  priest  has  to  guide 
their  choice,  &c.  If  they  enter  upon  the  monastic  life, 
they  have  to  take  a  vow,  never  to  have  the  least  inter- 
com'se  with  the  other  sex,  never  to  look  at  a  woman, 
nor  hear  her  voice,  nor  to  eat  anything  which  has  been 
di'essed  by  women,  not  even  bi'ead,  &c.  This,  of 
course,  leads  them  to  convents,  where  no  females  are 
allowed  to  enter. 

Discipline.*  In  cases  of  criminal  intercourse  with 
women,  a  monk  is  cxconnnunicatcd  for  twenty  years ; 
a  married  man — whether  of  the  clergy  or  the  laity, — 
for  forty  years  ;  and  a  priest  loses  his  office,  and  is  re- 
moved into  the  laity.  I  asked  Abba  Tseddoo,  what  was 
done  when  an  excommunicated  person  died  before  his 
time  had  transpired.  He  answered,  that  in  such  cases 
the  priest  endeavoured  to  prepare  the   dying  penitent ; 

*  I  relate  here  exactly  what  the  priest  told  me,  not  adding  any  re- 
marks, reserving  some  necessary  explanation  perhaps  for  another 


that  if  the  latter  really  repented  of  his  sins,  the  priest 
promised  to  take  half  the  remaining  time  of  penitence 
upon  himself,  and  to  work  it  out  by  fasting  and  prayer ; 
and  for  the  other  half,  he  endeavoured  to  persuade  him, 
if  he  possessed  any    property,  to   distribute  it  among 
the  poor,   the  priests,  and  monks;  to   order  Tescars — 
feastings  to  the  clergy  and  the  poor  in  remembrance  of 
the  dead  person,  for  the  purpose  of  encom-aging  many 
prayers  for  him — to  see  prayers  performed,    and  the 
Lord's  Supper  administered  in    his  favour;  and  thus 
the  priest  dismissed  the  dying   person  with   the  abso- 
lution, and  then  the  latter  would,  after  his  death,  arrive 
in  the    Sheol — intermediate   place    between    hell  and 
heaven — where  he  had  to  stay  until  by  his  alms,  tescars, 
prayers,  fastings,  and  communion   (masses)  he  got  to 
heaven.     I  asked  him,  whether  this  discipline  was  really 
observed.     He  replied,  very  seldom ;  though  it  is  still 
acknowledged.     On  my  inquiring,   whether  they  had 
any  divine  authority  for  prescribing  as  well  as  observ- 
ing such   discipline,    he  referred  to    certain  sentences 
which  he  thought  were  taken  from  the  Gospel ;  but 
which  are   derived  from  the  Fathers.     Upon  showing 
him  this,  he   appealed  to  the  apostolical  constitutions, 
and  Fetha   Negest — their  code  of  laws.     I  answered, 
that  those  laws  must   be  judged  by  the  Word  of  God, 
and  deviated  from  where  they  do  not  agree  with  it.     I 
then    showed  him    Luke    xvi,    concerning   Dives    and 
Lazarus,  dwelling  particularly  on  the  great  gulf  fixed 
between  heaven  and  hell,  and  the  impossibility  of  pas- 


sing  from  one  to  the  other.     He  said,  "  This  passage 
must  be  explained."     I   asked,  how  he  was  able  to  ex- 
plain it  so  as  to  maintain    his  doctrine   and  the  usage 
of  his    Church,    without    explaining    it    away.       He 
referred  to  the  passage :  "  Whatsoever  ye  shall  hind 
on    earth,    8^'c."     I    observed  to  him,  that  this  passage 
took  for  granted  the  submission  of  the  Apostles  as  well 
as  their  followers,  the   ministers   of  the    Gospel,    un- 
der  the  entire  Word    of  God,   and  thus  the   terrible 
gulf  was   not  filled  up.     He  then  related  the  follow^- 
iug  story,  which   he  said  was  contained  in  Athanasius' 
writings,  and  which   I  had  heard  once  from  Debtera 
Abisalom   at    Adowah.       A  certain  rich    man,    called 
Bael,    died,    after    having    amassed    many    treasvu'es, 
not  having  cared  for  the  state  of  his  soul.     His  pious 
son,  who,  during  his  father's  life-time,  had  often  in 
vain  reminded  him    to  think    on    eternity,   saw  in  a 
di-eam  his  soul  going  into  hell-fire  ;  so  that  nothing  re- 
mained to  be  seen,  not  even   the  hairs  of  his  head, 
being  wholly  drowned  in   the  fiery  sea.      \Yhen    he 
awoke,  his  fearful  dream  had  such  an  eficct   upon  him, 
that    he  immediately  sat  to  work,  collected  one  half 
of  his  father's  treasures,  and  gave  them  to  the  poor 
and  to   the  churches^  ordering  prayers  to  be    offered. 
Psalms  to  be  read,  fastings  performed,  and  commmiion 
administered  for  his  late  father.     Soon  after  he  had 
the  pleasure  to  see  the  good  effect   of  his  exertions; 
for,  in  another  dream,  he  saw  again  the  flaming  abyss, 
and  his  father  rising  out  of  it,  above  its  surface,  up  to 

G  5 


liis  loins.  Encouraged  by  this  success^  he  gave  the 
remaining  half  of  his  father's  possession  for  the  same 
purpose  as  the  first,  and  his  father  ascended  out  of 
hell -fire  into  heaven.  In  reply  to  this  story,  I  told 
him,  that  we  considered  Athanasius  to  have  been  one 
of  the  most  distinguished  Fathers,  and  that  we  hon- 
oured him  much  on  account  of  his  manly  conduct  in 
struggling  against  Arianism  for  the  glory  of  the  Son 
of  God,  and  on  account  of  the  sufferings  he  endured 
in  that  cause ;  but,  nevertheless,  we  felt  obliged  to 
examine  into  his  doctrines,  and  such  things  as  did  not 
harmonize  with  the  letter  and  tendency  of  the  Scrip- 
tures we  must  reject ;  and  if  this  story,  which  he 
had  been  relating  to  me,  was  really  contained  in  Atha- 
nasius' writings,  we  should  reject  it  as  anti-scriptural, 
thou2;h  I  doubted  whether  it  had  not  been  falsely 
ascribed  to  him.  As  to  my  own  feelings,  I  said,  that  I 
could  not  ventm-e  to  pray  for  any  dead  person,  however 
dear  to  me  in  this  world,  because  St.  Paul  says.  Whatso- 
ever is  not  of  faith  is  sin;  reasoning  thus: — Faith  is 
grounded  upon  the  Word  of  God ;  a  faithful  prayer  is 
such  as  has  a  Divine  command,  and  a  Divine  promise 
for  its  basis.  Now  as  to  dead  persons,  we  have  neither 
Divine  command  nor  promise  encouraging  us  to  pray 
for  them ;  and,  consequently,  we  cannot  pray  in  faith, 
if  we  really  pray  for  them ;  and  not  being  able  to  pray 
in  faith,  our  prayer,  instead  of  being  answered,  would 
be  counted  as  an  addition  to  our  numberless  sins.  And 
a  further  proof  of  this,  was  James  i.  6,  7 ;  iv.  3.     The 

PRAYING  FOR  THE  DEAD.         131 

fact  was,  that  we  believed  the  fate  of  mortals,  at  least 
those  to  whom  the  Word  of  God  was  given,  to  be 
decided  immediately  after  death — Luke  xvi ;  Hebrews 
ix.  27.  Here  was  the  seed-time,  and  hereafter  the  har- 
vest ;  and  he  that  died  in  sin,  for  him  w^as  no  further 
sacrifice  ;  and  even  if  we  should  suppose  that  God  had 
provided  means  for  their  salvation,  as  they  were  not 
within  our  reach,  nor  knowledge,  we  could  by  no  means 
make  any  use  of  them.  He  answered,  that  it  w^as  true 
that  those  who  died  in  sin,  had  nothing  but  darkness 
before  them ;  but  that  from  behind  this  world,  there 
fell  some  few  rays  of  Hght  into  their  path,  which  tended 
to  lessen  their  dark  night  a  little ;  and  if  they  made  a 
proper  use  of  these  rays,  they  would  increase,  and  by 
degi-ees  lead  them  to  full  light.  This  is  in  itself  an 
ingenious  idea ;  but,  who  will  lighten  the  w^ay  for  the 
dead,  as  well  as  for  the  living,  if  not  that  ivord,  tvhich 
is  a  lamp  u?ito  my  feet,  and  a  light  unto  my  path  ? 

Marriage. — With  regard  to  mamages,  he  said  that 
their  Chm*ch  permitted  successive  marriages  :  with  lay- 
men as  many  as  four.  They,  however,  do  not  cpiitc 
agree  with  each  other,  some  Churches  not  allowing  more 
than  three.  If  people  wish  to  live  in  accordance  wnth 
the  Church,  they  are  obliged,  after  their  last  marriage, 
to  enter  the  monastic  life,  not,  however,  as  it  seems,  with 
the  same  restrictions  as  the  regular  Abyssinian  monas- 
tic order. 

Fasting. — Concerning  fasting,  he  mentioned,  that 
many  people  did  not  observe  the  forty-days  fasting  (of 

132  ON    FASTING. 

Lent),  nor  the  fast  of  the  Apostles  (after  "\Aliitsun- 
dav,  of  twelve  days  continuance)  ;  nor  that  of  the 
Vh-gin's  assumption  (a  fortnight)  nor  Tsoma  Ledat 
(Advent) ;  but  he  that  observed  no  fasting  at  all,  woidd 
not  be  interred  in  the  Church's  burial  ground.  I  asked, 
how  it  was  that  so  many  people  scarcely  ever  fasted. 
He  replied,  that  they  still  fasted  every  Wednesday  and 
Friday ;  and  that  they  were  not  admitted  to  the  Com- 
munion, except  they  made  penances  for  their  non-ob- 
servance of  the  Saint's  fastings.  An  honourable  burial, 
however,  was  not  refused  to  them.  I  asked  him,  whe- 
ther they  would  bury  us,  since  we  did  not  observe  their 
fastings.  He  said,  that  they  would;  for  our  Church 
did  not  prescribe  fasting.  He  then  related  of  Abba 
Mohallem — a  certain  Armenian  Wortabet,  of  the  name 
of  Yohannes,  who  died  here  last  year — that  he  had  not 
fasted  at  first,  and  had  even  eaten  meat  on  Wednesdays 
and  Fridays,  whereby  the  people  of  Shoa  thought  that 
the  Armenian  Chuch  had  no  fastings  ;  but  that  after  they 
had  several  times  m-ged  him  to  fast,  he  at  last  yielded, 
complying  with  the  Abyssinian  custom. 

Many  have  asked  from  us  the  famous  "  medicine  of 
colours."  To-day  a  boy,  belonging  to  St.  Michaers, 
mentioned  it  again  ;  but  I  was  glad  to  observe  that  he 
was  not  so  superstitious ;  for  he  remarked,  that  that 
medicine  indeed  produced  pain  in  the  bowels,  but 
did  not  open  the  head. 

October  5,  1839  —To-day  Abba  Tseddoo  brought  us 
a  Genzet — formulary  for  the  burial  of  the  dead — which 


they  say  originated  witli  Athanasius ;  and  in  order  to 
render  it  still  more  important,  it  is  stated  in  the  book 
itself,  that  Helena  had  discovered  it,  at  the  digging 
out  of  the  Holy  Cross.  At  the  same  time,  however, 
the  councils  of  Nice,  Constantinople,  and  Ephesus  are 
mentioned  in  it,  whereby  it  is  clear  that  it  cannot 
have  been  wn-itten  by  Athanasius,  at  least  not  in  its 
present  form. 

This  evening  a  messenger  arrived  from  the  King, 
who  ordered  us  to  come  to  Angollala  to-morrow,  when 
probably  my  departure  will  be  settled. 

October  8 — The  day  before  yesterday  it  rained  so 
heavily  in  the  morning,  that  we  feared  we  should  not  be 
able  to  go  to  Angollala ;  but  on  the  sky  clearing  up 
in  the  afternoon  we  set  out.  We  had,  however,  not 
gone  far,  when  it  began  again  to  rain  tremendously ;  we 
could  but  \nth  difficulty  and  danger  pass  the  toi*rent 
Airara — about  three  miles  west  of  Ankobar — and  the 
road  was  so  bad,  that  we  were  obliged  to  remain  at 
Metatit.  There  we  took  our  lodgings  with  the  Tchikka 
Shum — literally,  governor  of  the  clay  or  dirt — whose 
duty  it  was  to  receive  us.  When  I  saw  them  smoking 
tobacco,  I  asked,  whether  they  did  it  to  honour  the 
Sarotsh  (See  Oct.  2),  which  they  at  fii'st  denied,  but 
afterward  acknowledged :  I  took  this  opportunity  to 
show  them  the  sinfulness  of  doing  so. 

Yesterday  morning  at  seven  o'clock  we  left  INIctatit, 
and  about  three  o'clock  in  the  afternoon  arrived  at  An- 
gollala.    The  house  where  we  lived  formerly,  was  now 

134  THE   KING   IN   COURT. 

occupied  by  its  ovAoier,  Habta  Maryam.  Wliile  Atkoo, 
our  guardian,  looked  out  for  another  house,  I  went  to 
see  M.  Rochet,  who  had  been  received  by  the  King  into 
his  house.  The  court  was  quite  full  of  people;  for  the 
King  had  guests  wdth  him,  among  others  a  late  General 
of  Ras  Ali.  "When  waiting  on  the  minister,  Serta 
Wold,  Mahomed  Ali,  from  Tadjurra,  who  had  accompa- 
nied M.  Rochet,  accosted  me.  Serta  Wold  introduced 
me,  not  to  M.  Rochet,  whom  on  the  present  occasion  I 
had  come  to  see,  but  to  the  King,  who  sat  at  judgment 
in  unusual  pomp,  the  balcony  where  he  sat  being  lined 
with  a  great  variety  of  coloured  cloth,  and  the  ground 
below,  where  his  grandees  and  governors,  judges,  ala- 
cas,  &c.,  sat  and  stood,  covered  with  Persian  and  Tur- 
kish carpets.  I  paid  my  compliments  from  below  to 
the  King,  who  very  friendly  answering  ordered  me  to 
sit  on  the  carpets.  A  cause  was  examined  between  two 
persons,  a  man  and  a  woman ;  which  was  soon  finish- 
ed, when  I  thought  the  King  would  have  sent  for  us ; 
but  he  did  not,  being  occupied  I  suppose  with  other 
business.  As  Mr.  Krapf  had  also  arrived  in  the  mean 
time,  we  inspected  a  new  house  which  was  being  built 
for  the  King,  and  then  went  to  see  M.  Rochet,  who 
was  suffering  from  fever. 

A  few  Letters  from  Basle,  Barmen,  and  Cairo,  which 
M.  Rochet  brought  us,  were  very  refreshing  to  us. 

October  9,  1839 — The  brother  of  our  friend  Alaca 
Habta  Selassieh  at  Oobieh^s  court,  known  from  Mr. 
Gobat's  and  our  former  journals,  having  several  times 


applied  for  medicine,  I  liad  ordered  him  to  collect  camo- 
miles, which  are  fomid  in  great  plenty  on  the  Chakka 
and  near  Ankobar,  called  to-day  again  ;  and  when  1 
offered  to  him  tartar  emetic  for  his  complaint,  he  would 
not  accept  it,  but  asked  for  paper,  on  which  he  wished 
to  have  a  charm  written  against  his  disease.  I  refused 
to  give  him  the  paper,  explaining  the  sinfulness  of 
such  a  practice  to  him ;  and  being  exceedingly  pressing, 
I  was  obliged  to  request  him  not  to  speak  any  more 
about  it. 

After  dinnci',  Debtera  Sandjar  called  on  us.  Some 
very  important  doctrinal  points  were  treated  upon  in 
oiu"  conversation,  particularly  universal  sinfulness,  not 
excepting  the  saints.  He  maintained  that  Christ  at  His 
incarnation  took  on  himself  human  nature,  in  the  same 
state  as  Adam  was  before  the  fall ;  with  which  I  agreed, 
obsernng,  however,  that  his  nature  differed  from  Adam^s 
innocent  nature  so  far,  that  Christ's  humanity  was  not 
exempt  from  sinless  infirmity  and  disposition  to  dis- 
eases, and  even  death ;  which  was  the  consequence  and 
punishment  of  our  sin.  Tliis  I  proved  by  some  circum- 
stances in  the  life  of  our  Sa\dour ;  namely,  that  He  hun- 
gered and  thirsted,  underwent  fatigue,  and  other  states 
of  weakness  and  sickness,  which  could  not  be  sup- 
posed to  have  occurred  in  the  state  of  Adam's  innocence. 
"When,  by  way  of  illustration,  I  observed,  that  when  a 
man  suffered  hunger  for  a  long  time  he  would  die,  and 
death  was  the  wages  of  sin,  he  denied  the  force  of  this 
argument,  because  all  the  cases  in   which  this  occurred 


were  with  sinful  men,  all  men  being  sinners.  I  then 
alluded  to  some  saints,  who  had  been  starved  to  death, 
not  on  account  of  their  sins,  but  for  the  name  of  Jesus, 
because  they  believed  in  Him.  He  objected,  that  we 
ourselves  maintained,  that  even  the  saints  had  not  been 
free  from  sin,  and  on  this  account,  were  subject  to  death ; 
whether  it  was  then  from  hunger  or  any  other  cause 
they  died,  it  mattered  nothing.  I  must  observe,  that 
1  had  taken  this  argument,  inconclusive  as  it  really  was, 
because  I  took  for  granted,  that  he,  like  the  Abyssin- 
ians  in  general,  believed  the  saints  to  be  free  from  sin. 
I  asked  him  then,  whether  he  agreed  with  us  in  this 
material  point.  He  answered,  "  Yes,  I  fully  agree  ^^•ith 
you."  I  replied,  that  on  this  assertion  I  did  not 
mind  yielding  for  the  present  to  him  the  other  point 
as  non-essential,  since  he  submitted  to  that  chief  doctrine 
of  the  Scriptures,  that  no  man  except  Christ  ever  had 
been  or  was  without  sin ;  upon  which  he  repeated  his 
strong  belief  in  this  doctrine.  He  then  left  us,  with  the 
promise  often  to  call,  in  order  to  search  the  Scriptures. 
October  10,  1839 — This  morning  the  King  sent  for 
us,  in  order  to  sj)eak  with  us  concerning  my  journey.  He 
asked  what  he  should  give  me  for  my  journey ;  to  which 
I  replied,  thanking  him  for  his  readiness  to  assist  me, 
and  obser\ing  that  it  was  om-  principle  not  to  trouble 
any  one ;  but  as  he  was  so  generous  toward  us,  I 
should  thankfully  accept  what  he  was  pleased  to  give. 
He  offered  to  give  me  tlii-ee  or  fom*  slaves.  Not  know- 
ing whether  he  intended  to  give  male  or  female  slaves, 

THE  king's  proffered  assistance.       137 

I  at  once  declined  accepting  any,  on  the  general  prin- 
ciples which  he  finds  it  so  difficult  to  comprehend,  since 
we  had  stated  them  several  times  before.  IMale  slaves 
I  should  perhaps  have  been  disposed  to  accept,  giving 
them  theii-  liberty  at  the  same  time,  and  trying  to  edu- 
cate them  afterward.  He  then  requested  me  to  men- 
tion to  him  anything  which  was  liked  in  oui-  country. 
I  then  mentioned  manuscripts  and  any  works  of  art, 
from  which  it  might  be  seen  how  far  the  Abyssinians 
were  advanced  in  industry.  He  asked  me  to  specify  the 
manuscripts  I  wished  for  ;  but  when  I  did  so,  he  express- 
ed himself  soiTy  at  not  being  able  to  let  me  have  them, 
he  himself  being  in  want  of  them.  He  said,  that 
he  had  sent  fifty  dollars  to  Godjam  in  order  to  get  two 
copies  of  their  chronological  work  called  Abooshaker. 
Concerning  our  provisions,  he  said,  that  he  had  given 
orders  for  them  already,  as  well  as  a  mule  for 
myself,  and  one  for  my  servant.  On  requesting  him 
to  inform  me  what  he  wished  for  from  our  country,  he 
said,  that  he  wished  for  nothing,  except  a  coining 
apparatus.  I  asked  him,  whether  he  wanted  any  work- 
men. He  replied  that  he  did  not,  because  there  were 
excellent  workmen  then  on  the  road  from  Gondar.  He 
then  dismissed  us,  declaring  that  he  intended  to  send  us 
to-morrow. — Soon  after,  Serta  Wold,  presented  me  with 
some  fine  baskets  from  the  King,  and  in  the  afternoon 
he  brought  two  fine  nudes,  one  for  me,  and  one  for  the 
servant,  and  fifty  dollars  for  me,  and  ten  for  the  ser- 
vant, as  the  King's  present  for  our  journey. 


October  13, 1839 — To-day,  I  arrived  at  Ankobar  from 
Debra  Berhan,  mth  my  brother  Isenberg,  who  had 
taken  his  farewell  of  the  King.  He  treated  him  in 
a  very  friendly  manner,  and  promised  not  only  to  pro- 
vide for  Mr.  Isenberg  on  the  road,  but  also  always  to 
behave  toward  me  as  his  son.  In  the  evening  several 
people  came  to  see  us,  and  among  others  Tseddoo,  a 
priest  of  St.  George,  who  began  speaking  about  fasting. 
He  said,  that  our  doctrines  and  lives  were  blameless, 
only  they  would  like  us  to  fast,  and  receive  with  them 
the  blessed  sacrament.  We  replied,  that  we  were  much 
inclined  to  yield  to  their  wish  in  respect  to  fasting,  if 
it  were  not  that  we  were  grieved  at  seeing  them  aiming 
to  be  justified  thereby  before  God  As  to  the  Lord^s 
Supper,  I  remarked,  that,  though  I  wished  to  receive 
it,  I  could  not  do  so,  as  their  ecclesiastical  laws  ex- 
cluded unmarried  people  from  partaking  of  it.  Besides, 
I  had  other  reasons  for  not  communicating  with  them. 
After  the  priest  had  left  me,  I  thought  it  fit  to  consult 
with  Brother  Isenberg  on  this  point  before  he  departed. 
First,  we  considered  that  the  omission  of  fasting  had 
been  a  continual  stumbling-block  in  the  eyes  of  the 
Abyssinians  since  the  commencement  of  our  Mission 
in  this  countiy ;  secondly,  that  fasting  is  not  sinful 
in  itself,  and  hence  not  against  the  principles  of  the 
Bible,  nor  the  Church  of  England  ;  and  thirdly,  we 
referred  to  the  examples  of  the  apostles,  particularly 
to  that  of  St.  Paul,  who  though  he  strictly  adhered  to 
justification  by  faith,  yet  condescended  in  this  respect 

ON   FASTING.  139 

of  his  own  accord  to  the  weakness  of  his  brethren. 
Relying  on  this  great  example,  we  thought  we  could, 
with  the  Lord's  assistance,  resolve  to  fast,  but  only 
^■oluntarily  and  out  of  love  to  our  brethren,  not  seeking 
thereby  om*  own  righteousness.  However,  we  thought  it 
fit  not  to  act  rashly  in  this  matter. 

October  16 — In  the  morning  Guebra  Georgis  came. 
I  read  fii-st  with  him  in  the  Gospel,  and  afterward  we 
finished  the  Universal  Histoiy,  which  Mr.  Isenberg 
had  written  in  Amharic.  As  Guebra  Georgis  has  ex- 
pressed a  wish  to  become  acquainted  with  Church 
Histor}^,  I  shall  accede  to  it,  the  more  so  as  a  useful 
preparatory  woi-k,  wi'itten  likewise  by  Mr.  Isenberg, 
will  form  the  basis  of  my  instruction.  Afterward,  the 
blind  Debtera  Habta  Mariam,  fi-om  Basso  in  Godtsham, 
came.  I  had  begun,  the  day  before,  to  read  to  him  the 
Epistle  of  St.  Paul  to  the  Romans,  which  Epistle  I 
prefer  in  reading  or  speaking  about  religious  matters, 
as  it  contains  before  all  other  books  an  antidote  against 
this  Pharisaical  Church.  The  above  named  priest, 
Tseddoo,  joined  me  in  reading  to  Habta  Mariam.  We 
read  Rom.  ii. ;  which  occasioned  a  long  conversation 
about  real  and  nominal  Christians.  Then  Alaca  Tesfa 
came  to  see  us.  He  said,  that  Abraham  was  the 
father  of  the  Abyssinians,  because  Solomon  had  a  son, 
named  jMenelek,  by  the  Queen  of  Arabia,  who  had 
been  Queen  of  Tigre ;  and  that  at  the  time  of  Solomon 
the  tribe  of  Benjamin  had  entered  Ethiopia,  and  the 
ark  of  the  covenant  had  been  brought  from  Jerusalem 

140  VISIT    TO    ALACA 

to  Tigre.  We  told  him^  first^  that  there  were  no  proofs 
in  history  that  the  queen  was  the  mistress  of  Tigre  at 
that  time,  or  that  she  bore  a  chikl  to  Solomon; 
and,  secondly,  that  Solomon  was  from  the  tribe  of  Judah, 
which  tribe  at  this  splendid  period  of  the  kingdom  of 
Israel  would  not  have  left  the  holy  land.  As  to  the 
ark  of  the  covenant,  it  was  at  Jerusalem  several  hundred 
years  after  Solomon  ;  and  to  appropriate  a  stolen 
sanctuary  (because  the  Abyssinians  say  that  the  ark 
was  stolen  from  Jerusalem)  would  be  a  sacrilege  for  ever 
disgraceful  to  the  Abyssinian  people.  TVTiy  did  they 
not  steal  also  the  holy  books  of  the  Jews  ?  It  is  not 
probable  that  a  sanctuary  was  stolen,  over  which  the 
Jews  had  exercised  the  greatest  watchfulness.  Besides, 
more  than  300  years  after  Christ's  birth,  at  the  time 
of  their  King's  Abreha  and  Azbeha,  the  Abyssinians 
were  heathens,  worshipping  the  serpent ;  how  then  could 
they  have  been  Jews  ?  Finally,  we  exhorted  him  to 
study  biblical  and  universal  history. 

In  the  afternoon,  we  went  to  see  Alaca  Wolda 
Hanna.  He  asked  about  the  day  on  which  Christ  was 
born  and  baptized.  On  replying  that  this  was  not 
precisely  known,  but  that  the  ancient  Fathers  of  the 
Church,  ])articularly  Chrysostom,  appointed  the  25th 
of  December,  as  the  day  of  Christ's  birth,  he  said, 
"  We  know  it  very  well ;  Christ  was  born  on  the  29th 
of  December,  and  was  baptized  on  the  11th  of 
January."  We  then  spoke  about  the  chronology  before 
Christ.     He  said,  that  the  Abyssinians  counted  nearly 

WOLDA   HANNA.  141 

6000  years,  proving  this  date  from  tlie  three  men 
praising  God  six  times  in  the  furnace.  A  treatise  on 
the  true  interpretation  of  Scripture,  treating  its  subject 
vnih.  soHdity  and  conciseness,  in  the  Amharic,  or  rather 
in  the  Ethiopic  language,  would  I  think  contribute 
much  to  the  removal  of  their  false  principles  of  the 
exposition  of  the  Bible.  On  our  way  we  called  upon 
Alaca  Serat.  He  spoke  about  the  idolatry  of  the 
Hindoos,  of  which  he  had  heard  something  in  geogra- 
phy. We  told  him  about  the  millions  of  their  deities  ; 
their  absurd  and  cruel  ceremonies  ;  and  remarked,  that 
the  Word  of  God,  if  preached  in  purity  and  in  the 
power  of  the  Holy  Ghost,  would  alone  destroy  the 
bulwarks  of  Satan.  We  related  to  him  the  history  of  a 
Brahmin,  who,  having  put  nails  in  his  shoes,  made  a 
pilgrimage  to  a  holy  place,  but  was  converted  by  a 
Missionary  preaching  on  John  i.  29. 

October  17,  1839 — Chm-ch  History  with  Guebra 
Georgis  and  Makbeb.  Guebra  is  taking  delight  in  this 
study.  After  we  had  finished  our  lesson,  Laaka  Mariam, 
the  Guraguean  priest,  whom  I  have  mentioned  before, 
came  to  see  me.  I  said,  that  I  had  thought  he  had  gone 
back  to  his  country.  We  then  read  2  Cor.  v.  I  re- 
minded him  of  the  great  day  of  the  Lord,  before  whom 
we  wished  to  appear  blameless ;  and  exhorted  him 
to  yield  up  his  whole  heart  to  Jesus  Christ,  and  to 
teach  his  people  in  Gurague  the  Word  of  God.  He 
then  said,  "  I  am  much  afraid  of  the  Gallas  on  the 
road.     I   therefore  request  you   to  give  me  an  Abenat 


(remedy)  against  my  fear."  At  the  same  time  he  asked, 
whether  if  he  carried  on  his  head  the  copy  of  the  New 
Testament  which  I  had  given  him,  it  would  be  of  any 
use.  I  replied,  that  the  specific  which  I  would  advise, 
was  the  reception  of  the  New  Testament  into  his  heart, 
and  to  commit  himself  and  his  way  to  the  covenant  God, 
who  alone  could  preserve  him,  as  he  had  protected  us 
when  travelling  through  the  country  of  Adel. 

Priest  Tseddoo  then  came,  and  conversed  with  me 
about  the  revealed  and  hidden  church ;  terms  which  in 
our  theology,  signify  the  visible  and  invisible  church. 
I  asked  him,  whether  the  people  called  Tabiban,  or 
wise  men,  dwelling  in  the  forest  of  Ankobar,  were  not 
ranked  by  the  Shoans  among  the  hidden  church.  He 
answered  in  the  negative ;  and  said,  that  the  Tabiban 
joined  outwardly  in  fellowship  with  the  Christians,  but 
privately  they  followed  their  own  religion,  asserting  that 
the  Messiah  was  still  to  be  expected.  This  people  are 
working  for  the  King,  who  presents  them  annually  with 
twenty  or  twenty-five  cows,  and  appoints  their  Alaca  in 
case  of  vacancy.  On  speaking  again  about  fasting,  our 
servant  Atkoo  made  use  of  a  strange  simile,  saying, 
that  if  a  mule  was  foddered  too  well,  he  woidd  become 
unmanageable,  and  hence  it  was  necessary  to  diminish 
his  food.  Thus  fasting  was  a  means  of  cooling  and 
abating  our  flesh.  First,  I  contended  against  this  unbe- 
coming comparison  between  irrational  animals  and  a 
Christian,  who  is  bidden  to  eat  and  di'ink  moderately, 
and  to  do  all  in  the  name  of  God    and  then  I  opposed 

FASTING.  14^3 

their  stniggling  for  justification  by  fasting,  turning  his 
thoughts  also  to  the  bad  consequences  of  their  fasting 
as  respects  the  body,  saying,  that  at  one  time  they  aspired 
at  killing  their  bodies  by  their  abstemiousness  ;  while, 
at  another  time,  they  ate  and  drank  to  excess.  In  the 
one  case,  they  were  unable  to  work ;  and,  in  the  other, 
they  swept  away  each  other  by  enmity,  hatred,  and 
mm'der.  Though  he  disputed  my  sapng  that  they 
killed  themselves  by  fasting,  yet  he  said  that  I  had 
spoken  the  truth. 

October  18, 1839 — Ha\dng  read  with  Guebra  Georgis 
in  the  Gospel,  I  proceeded  with  the  Chm'ch  History. 
Several  priests  were  also  with  us.  Tseddoo  brought  a 
book  called  Tabiba  Tabiban,  much  esteemed  by  the 
Abyssinians.  It  contains  prayers  against  bad  spirits. 
In  the  afternoon  I  went  to  see  Abba  Sawold,  a  monk, 
who  is  considered  one  of  the  most  learned  men  of  Shoa. 
He  spoke  about  their  seven  chronologies ;  but  I  found 
that  all  his  wisdom  is  comprehended  in  their  almanack, 
called  Abooshaker.  Afterward,  I  went  on  with  Guebra 
Georgis  in  Church  History,  speaking  about  the  Chris- 
tian life  of  the  primitive  Church.  Tseddoo  then  asked 
about  the  qualifications  required  in  oiu*  ordination. 
A\Tien  I  told  him,  that  a  man  destitute  of  learning  and 
holy  life,  was  not  admitted  to  the  ordination  of  a  dea- 
con and  priest,  he  was  much  struck,  and  said,  "  If  this 
is  required,  we  should  succeed  very  badly  in  ordination." 
I  then  asked,  what  qualifications  they  required,  and  their 
mode  of  ordination.     He  said,  that  children  dare  not 


know  about  this  mystery ;  that  a  person  desirous  of 
ordination  from  the  Abuna,  was  asked,  whether  he  un- 
derstood reading  the  Gospel ;  which  if  he  did,  the  Abuna 
breathed  upon  him,  making  the  sign  of  the  cross  and 
having  thus  taken  orders  he  receives  the  holy  Supper, 
gives  several  pieces  of  salt  to  the  Abuna,  and  the  whole 
ceremony  is  finished.  I  spoke  against  the  wanton  man- 
ner in  performing  so  holy  a  ceremony,  and  brought  it  in 
connexion  with  the  corruption  of  the  Abyssinian  Church, 
obserWng,  that  if  priests  were  unlearned  men,  their 
flocks  woiddperish  in  ignorance  ;  and  that  if  they  did  not 
live  a  holy  life,  the  people  would  follow  their  example. 
Tseddoo  then  asked,  why  we  did  not  wear  a  turban  and 
a  cross,  as  we  were  priests.  I  remarked,  that  the  Word 
of  God  had  not  given  us  directions  about  the  mode  of 
dress,  which  varied  in  different  countries  and  chm'ches. 
As  to  the  cross,  we  wished  it  to  be  in  om*  hearts  and 
doctrine, — to  crucify,  as  Paul  says,  the  flesh  with  its 
lusts,  and  to  know  nothing  save  Jesus  Christ  and  him 
criLcified.  I  then  rebuked  him,  on  account  of  their  pha- 
risaical  doings,  and  of  their  putting  flesh  for  spirit,  and 
external  performances  for  inward  religion.  He  then  said, 
that  St.  Paul,  in  healing  sick  persons,  made  the  sign  of 
the  cross.  I  asked  him  to  give  me  a  proof  from  the 
New  Testament ;  but  being  rather  puzzled,  he  said,  "  I 
will  give  you  a  proof  to-morrow." 

October  19,  1839 — Tseddoo  came  very  early  this 
morning ;  but  instead  of  giving  me  a  proof  of  what  he 
had  said  yesterday,  he  maintained  that  the  wood  of  which 

ON    GOOD    WORKS.  145 

the  cross  of  Christ  was  made^  was  called  Wetckua,  as  is 
written  in  the  book  of  Taniera  Jesus.  This  matter  led 
to  a  long  chscourse  about  the  difference  between  the 
Word  of  God  and  that  of  men.  As  in  the  mean  time 
several  people  had  come,  I  read  the  third  chapter  of 
Genesis,  showing  them  the  necessity  of  relying  only 
upon  the  Word  of  God ;  when  a  priest  from  Kuara,  a 
province  in  the  west  of  Dembea,  began  to  speak  about 
good  works,  referring  to  ^latt.  xxv.  34 — 41.  I  ap- 
plied the  aforesaid  discom-se  about  the  Word  of  God 
to  him,  sapng,  that  the  Scriptm'es  only  could  teach  us 
what  was  a  good  work ;  and  that  as  the  Abyssinians 
did  not  rely  alone  on  that  Word,  I  did  not  wonder  at 
their  confused  and  unscriptui-al  views  of  good  works. 
Finally,  I  exhorted  them  to  examine  themselves  in  the 
pm-e  light  of  God's  Word,  in  order  to  really  know 
their  sinfulness,  and  to  repent ;  to  seek  forgiveness 
through  the  blood  of  Christ ;  and  the  experience  of  His 
love,  by  which  they  would  be  enabled  to  perform  good 
works ;  but  that  if  they  would  not  hear  the  voice  of 
the  Gospel,  they  would  die  in  their  so-called  good 
works,  or  rather  sins,  and  have  to  bewail  their  folly 
with  the  lost  for  ever  and  ever. 

Several  boys  afterward  came,  \nth  whom  I  first  read 
in  the  New  Testament,  and  then  I  began  to  make  them 
acquainted  with  the  Universal  History  in  Amharic. 
On  their  leaving,  I  asked  how  many  boys  were  in  the 
school  of  St.  George.  They  said,  that  twenty  boys  were 
instructed  in  singing,  ten  others  in  reading,  and  thirty 



exercised  themselves  in  poems,  all  of  whom  were  in- 
structed by  six  teachers  ;  and  that  if  the  Abuna  should 
come,  they  would  all  go  to  Gondar,  to  take  holy  orders. 
On  my  asking,  whether  they  were  not  afraid  of  the 
Gallas  on  the  road,  they  said,  that  the  King  would 
charge  a  Galla  Governor  to  take  care  of  them  on  the 

October  20,  1839 — Tseddoo  came,  requesting  me  to 
read  with  him  Matt.  v.  in  iEthiopic,  which  I  did. 
Speaking  about  proceedings  before  human  judges,  I 
asked  how  justice  was  administered  in  Shoa.  Guebra 
Georgis,  who  was  with  us,  said,  that  on  a  man^s  being 
accused  of  theft,  he  was  taken  into  three  chm'ches,  in 
each  of  which  he  took  oath  of  not  having  stolen.  If 
he  be  iipright  and  guilty,  he  confesses  his  sin  before 
he  is  ordered  by  the  priests  to  swear,  retm-ns  the  stolen 
goods,  and  pays,  as  a  fine,  eight  pieces  of  salt  to  the 
Governor.  If  the  accuser  should  make  oath  against 
him,  the  man  is  forced  to  return  the  goods  charged  upon 
him,  whether  he  may  have  stolen  them  or  not.  After- 
ward, I  read  Rom.  iii.  to  the  blind  Debtera  Habta 

October  22 — Tseddoo  turned  the  conversation  upon 
baptism,  saying,  that  a  father  who  did  not  bring  his 
child  to  the  font  on  the  fortieth  day  after  birth,  would 
be  excommunicated ;  and  that  when  the  child  had  been 
baptized,  the  holy  supper  was  administered  to  it.  I  ob- 
jected to  this  as  being  inconsistent  with  1  Cor,  xi.,  where 
every  one   is  exhorted  to  examine  himself  before  he 


receives  that  Supper.  Besides,  it  was  inconsistent 
with  the  words  of  the  institution  of  that  sacrament, 
according  to  Matt,  xxvi.,  where  Christ  commanded  it 
to  be  received  in  remembrance  of  Him,  which  childi*en 
are  incapable  of.  He  admitted  that  their  custom  was 
not  in  accordance  with  the  Scriptm-es.  While  we  were 
engaged  in  our  discourse,  the  above-mentioned  monk, 
Abba  Sawold,  interrupted  us,  and  commenced  speaking 
about  the  two  great  witnesses  in  the  Revelation  of  St. 
John.  He  said,  that  the  Abyssinians  were  of  opinion, 
that  these  were  Elias  and  Enoch.  I  said,  that  we  did 
not  know  this ;  that  as  the  prophecy  was  not  yet 
accomplished,  we  could  not  know ;  and  that  it  did  not 
become  us  to  explain  the  "Word  of  God  in  accordance 
with  our  oyvn  pre-conceptions. 

Tseddoo  spoke  about  the  instruction  given  to  the 
Gallas  intended  to  be  baptized.  They  are  taught,  he 
said,  the  Symbolum  Nizenum ;  then  the  book  Amada 
Mistir  and  Sena  Fetrat,  in  which  books  there  is  much 
nonsense;  after  which  they  wear  a  Mateb,  and  are 
then  baptized :  but  usually  they  are  not  taught  so 
much  before  they  are  christened.  If  they  should 
have  been  circumcised,  and  wear  a  Mateb — string  of 
silk  in  sign  of  Christianity — and  make  an  offering  of 
some  measures  of  wheat  to  the  priest,  they  are  at 
once  baptized.  The  Symbolum  Nizenum  is  called  Zelota 
Haimanoth.  They  do  not  know  the  Symbolum  Apos- 
tolicum,  which  may  be  a  proof  that  this  Symbolum 
was  not  eveiywherc  used  in  the  Church,  or,  what  is  more 

H  2 

148  ON    FASTING. 

probable,  was  out  of  use  when  the  Abyssinians  became 

October  23,  1839— Church  History  with  Guebra 
Georgis  and  jNIakbeb.  Afterward,  we  read  Matt.  ix.  A 
priest  who  Avas  with  us  contended  for  the  necessity  of 
fasting,  in  consequence  of  the  great  depravity  of  the 
Abyssinians.  "AVell,"  I  said,  "you  bear  \\dtness  against 
yoursehes;  and  as  to  the  corruptness  of  Abyssinia, 
you  have  spoken  the  truth ;  but  you  are  deceived  if 
you  maintain  that  yom*  depravity  can  be  destroyed  by 
fasting.  If  you  think  of  crucifying  your  flesh  in  this 
way,  and  thus  deliver  yoiu'selves,  you  renounce  Jesus 
Christ  as  the  Saviom*,  who  is  made  to  us  ivisdom, 
righteousness,  sanct'ification,  and  redeinj)tion.  There- 
fore, God  in  His  just  judgment  permits  you  to  fall  into 
all  sins,  that  you  may  know  yom'  real  corruption,  and 
seek  to  be  saved  by  faith  in  Christ,  who  came  to  call 
sinners  to  repentance.'^ 

In  the  evening,  Tseddoo  brought  to  me  a  book, 
called  Lefafa  Zedek,  which  is  full  of  nonsense.  The 
Abyssinians  like  it  so  much,  that  they  have  it  put  into 
their  graves  with  them. 

October  24 — I  went  to  see  the  Alaca  of  Aferbeini, 
whose  Church  is  in  a  forest  on  the  eastern  side  of 
Ankobar.  He  spoke  about  fasting.  Afterward,  I 
read  Church  History  with  Guebra  Georgis,  and  some 
others.  T^Tienl  spoke  about  the  Nicene  Council,  Guebra 
said,  that  the  Abyssinians  were  of  opinion  that  Maho- 
med, the  prophet  of  the  Mahomedans,  was  one  of  the 

VISIT    TO    AILO    TSANNA.  l-i9 

318  fathers  congregated  at  Nice ;  but  as  Satan  pos- 
sessed him,  he  parted  from  the  fathers.  But  Guebra 
Georgis  knowing  the  time  of  the  Nicene  Council,  and 
the  rise  of  INIahomed,  laughed  at  this  ignorance  of  his 
people.  He  then  asked,  whether  Mary  corJd  be  called 
"WolacUta  Amlak  (who  brought  forth  God).  I  showed 
him  ]Matt.  i.  16,  25,  and  John  iii.  1 ;  whereupon  he 
said,  "  I  understand  it :  she  must  be  called  Woladita 
Jesus,  (mother  of  Jesus. )^^ 

October  25 — In  the  morning  we  were  called  by  the 
Governor  of  the  town,  Ailo  Tsanna.  He  said,  that 
he  had  got  strict  orders  from  the  King  not  to  let  jMr. 
Isenberg  go  before  he  had  disclosed  to  him  a  great 
secret.  On  asking  what  this  secret  was,  he  showed  us  a 
bone,  on  which  was  written  some  Arabic  characters ;  and 
requested  us  to  tell  him  of  what  use  the  bone  was,  as  the 
King  wished  to  know.  Mr.  Isenberg  told  him  to  throw 
the  bone  away,  as  it  was  quite  useless;  and  that  a 
knave  must  have  given  it  to  the  King  in  the  hope 
of  getting  a  good  reward.  Mterward,  I  came  with 
Guebra  Georgis  in  Church  Histoiy  to  the  Gnostics. 
I  showed  him  the  bad  consequences  of  a  Christian 
teacher  not  relying  solely  upon  the  Bible. 

October  26— Two  priests  of  Gurague  came  to  see 
me.  They  had  arrived  at  Angollala  in  four  days  from 
Aimellel.  Aimellcl  is  on  the  frontiers  of  Gurague. 
They  asked  me  much  about  my  country,  Jerusa- 
lem, and  whether  we  had  slaves  like  their  country- 
men.      Knowing  that    slavery   is  much  practised  in 


Gurague,  I  insisted  upon  proving  to  them  both  from  rea- 
son and  Scriptm-e,  the  sinfulness  of  this  traffic.  After- 
ward, the  Wind  Debtera  Habta  Mariam  came,  to  whom 
I  explained  Rom.  v. 

To-day  we  learned  concerning  Sidama,  that  it  is 
situated  to  the  west  of  the  blue  Nile,  between  the 
Gooderoo  country  and  Enarea.  In  Sidama,  Enarea, 
and  CafFa,  are  many  Christians:  beyond  the  two 
latter  countries  Gallas  are  said  to  live,  who,  the  Abys- 
sinians  say,  have  no  language.  From  Enarea  par- 
ticularly they  bring  good  coffee,  better  than  that  which 
is  cultivated  near  the  lake  of  Tsana,  and  the  civet-cat. 
Shankelas,  who  live  not  far  from  the  fountains  of  the 
blue  Nile,  bordering  on  the  Agows,  and  go  quite 
naked,  are  said  to  collect  much  gold,  which  they  bring 
to  Goudar  for  sale.  From  Gm-ague  they  bring  to 
Shoa  carpets,  made  of  ensete ;  gm-arima,  a  certain 
spice  which  I  do  not  know  ;  some  gold,  and  skins  of 
brown  leopards,  which  they  call  gisselas.  The  chief 
articles  which  are  imported  into  Enarea,  are  blue  Surat 
cloth,  and  rock  salt  from  Arho,  in  the  south  of  Tigre, 
which  latter  article  is  c\n-rent  in  many  of  these  countries 
instead  of  money.  Coined  money  does  not  seem  to  be 
used  in  the  countries  west  and  south  of  Abyssinia. 
Gold  is  found  in  several  places.  It  is  occasionally  found, 
afterthe  rainy  season,  near  Debra  Berhan,when  thewater 
has  washed  away  some  of  the  ground,  and  brought  the 
gold  to  light.  Priest  Laaka  Maryam  says,  that  Gura- 
gue    contains  much   gold ;  but  this  man  is   not  to  be 


depended  upon  for  liis  statements.  The  country  on 
botli  sides  of  the  Tshatsha  river^  not  far  from  Angol- 
lala,  is  veiy  rich  in  metals;  many  of  the  Tabiban 
have  settled  in  small  huts  on  its  shores,  where  they 
dig  and  work  ii'on.  But  this  iron  does  not  seem  to  be 
so  good  as  the  Tigre  iron,  which  is  of  an  excellent 

October  27,  1839 — My  Galla  servant,  Berkie,  from 
Kum  Dengai,  in  the  tribe  of  Gelan,  gave  me  the  following 
information  about  his  people.  The  priests,  who  are 
called  Kallitshotsh,  offer  an  annual  sacrifice  to  the  Wake 
under  a  tree,  called  Riltoo.  In  offering  it,  they  pray  : 
"  0  Wake,  give  us  tobacco,  cows,  sheep  and  oxen,  and 
help  us  to  kill  om*  enemies.  0  Wake,  take  us  to  thee  ; 
lead  us  to  the  garden  ;  lead  us  not  to  Satan.^'  They 
have  also  sorcerers,  who  are  called  Lubotsh — in  the 
singular,  Luba.  These  priests  go  every  year  to  Woda- 
nabe,  a  large  worka-tree,  near  the  Hawash,  where 
they  make  their  prayers  and  divinations  from  looking 
upon  the  entrails  of  goats  and  sheep.  If  the  entrails 
appear  very  red,  the  Luba  says,  that  the  Gallas  will 
be  overpowered  by  the  Christians.  The  priests  dry 
these  entrails,  and  wear  them  round  their  necks.  The 
Gallas  do  not  like  to  have  a  Christian  Governor  placed 
over  them,  because,  they  say,  that  they  would  become 
Christians,  and  then  very  soon  die.  If  they  get  a 
Christian  Governor,  they  all  cry  together  :  "  Ila  batu  ! 
ha  batu  ! " — May  he  perish  !  May  he  perish  !  When  the 
Gallas  take  an  oath  they  make  a  ditch,  and  say,  "If  we 

152  CUSTOMS    OF    THE   GALLAS. 

are  forswearing  ourselves,  may  we  be  cast  into  this  pit." 
T^Tien  a  Galla  takes  a  wife,  her  father  gives  her  a  dow- 
ry ;  but  if  she  is  parting  with  her  husband,  she  goes 
out  empty  handed.  In  general  the  Gallas  take  three 
wives.  When  the  father  of  a  family  dies,  the  childi'en 
cut  off  their  hair  and  shave  themselves.  They  then 
slaughter  a  cow  and  eat  it  with  their  relations,  but  not 
before  the  dead  is  interred.  Marriages  are  performed 
before  the  Abatiila,  a  petty  governor  of  several  villages. 
If  a  Gallas  kills  a  male,  he  is  to  pay  100  Kum, 
that  is  to  say,  100  oxen,  and  is  otherwise  punished. 
If  he  kills  a  female,  he  is  to  pay  fifty  Kum,  or  fifty 
oxen.  As  to  the  places  of  the  dead,  they  are  of 
opinion,  that  Christians,  Mahomedans,  and  Gallas  go 
to  different  places  after  death.  Aloes  are  planted  on 
their  graves.  As  soon  as  the  plant  begins  to  grow, 
they  say,  that  the  soul  of  the  dead  is  gone  to  the 
garden,  to  the  Wake, — the  God  of  the  universe,  whom 
they  consider  an  invisible  and  very  fine  being.  When 
a  Galla  has  been  detected  in  lying,  he  is  despised, 
and  loses  his  seat  and  vote  in  public  meetings.  Berkie 
also  told  me,  that  a  species  of  great  leopards  existed 
in  the  province  of  Shoa  Meda,  which  are  fiercer  than 
those  of  Efat,  and  enter  into  the  house  of  the  people  : 
it  is  called  Woba.  I  am  unable  to  say  whether  it  is 
the  Asiatic  tiger. 

I  asked  a  priest,  who  was  with  me  about  the  com'se 
which  the  Abyssinian  teachers  pvirsued  in  instructing 
youths.     He  said,  that  the  boys  were  first  instructed 


iu  reading  the  seven  Epistles,  called  Catholic — the 
Abyssiniaus  call  them  Gebata  Hawarjat.  Afterv\'ard 
they  read  the  Book  of  Revelations,  the  Gospels,  the 
Acts,  and  Epistles  of  St.  Paul,  They  learn  by  heart 
the  greater  part  of  these  books.  Afterward  they  read 
the  Organon  Mariam,  Isaiah,  AYoudassie  Anilak,  Hiob, 
Psalms,  Synkesar,  Guebra  Hemamat,  Gadela  Georgis, 
Pentateuch,  Genset,  Semarie  and  Kenie,  and  Aboo- 
shaker.  A  learned  man  knomng  all  this  is  called  a 
great  Lik  (master).  Few  people  finish  this  course. 
The  greater  part  of  the  scholars  are  content  with  learn- 
ing singing,  as  they  are  enabled  by  this  to  officiate  in 
Church  after  having  taken  holy  orders.  The  course  of 
study  is  different  in  some  parts  of  Abyssinia,  as,  for 
instance,  in  Godtsham,  as  I  learned  from  the  blind 
Debtera  Habta  Mariam. 

October  28,  1839— A  Debtera  of  the  Church  of  St. 
Mai-y's  came  requesting  us  to  give  him  the  seven  colours. 
We  asked,  which  colours  he  meant.  He  replied,  Efran, 
Kai  Kallem,  Maseka,  Afera  Mesk,  Kafara  Lake,  Sum 
el  far ;  but  the  seventh  he  did  not  know.  As  the  Abyssi- 
niaus believe  that  a  man  who  has  got  these  seven  colours 
is  in  possession  of  all  wisdom,  we  remarked,  that  we 
wondered  at  their  being  so  ignorant,  if  they  knew  of 
such  a  remedy;  but  as  for  ourselves,  we  did  not  know 
any  other  way  of  getting  knowledge  than  by  daily  ex- 
ercise, and  prayer  for  God's  blessing. 

This  evening  I  finished  reading  with  Tseddoo  the 
Epistle  of  St.  Paul  to  the  Galatians:  I  have  endeavoured 

H  5 


to  show  him  from  this  Epistle  the  scriptural  way  of 
becoming  righteous  before  God.  The  son  of  Alaca 
Serat  came,  saying,  that  as  Mr.  Isenberg  was  going, 
and  I  intended  to  remain  in  their  country,  I  should 
follow  their  customs.  I  said,  that  we  who  are  called 
Christians  were  to  be  directed  by  the  Word  of  God,  and 
not  to  encourage  each  other  to  follow  human  customs, 
God's  Word  alone  showing  us  the  way  of  salvation.  I 
added,  that  I  would  rather  encourage  them  to  follow 
me,  because  if  they  examined  my  doctrine  and  life,  they 
would  find  that  it  was  more  consistent  with  the  Word 
of  God,  than  their  doctrines  and  lives.  From  that 
time  he  said  no  more  about  this. 

October  29,  1839 — The  priest  Tseddoo  brought  to 
me  another  book  called,  "  Ridan."  He  then  said, 
"  If  you  go  to  our  Church,  you  must  kiss  it  before  you 
enter."  I  said,  "You  must  worship  Him  who  re- 
sides in  the  Church,  and  is  higher  than  the  Chm*ch  ; 
and  your  worship  must  be  performed  in  truth  and 
spirit."  He  then  went  away,  but  soon  returned  again, 
bringing  with  him  the  Abyssinian  Liturgy.  I  found 
much  therein  which  pleased  me.  I  showed  him  our 
English  Liturgy  on  this  occasion.  Afterward,  a  man 
of  Gondar  came,  whom  we  asked  about  the  present 
King,  Wolda  Dcnghel.  He  said  that  he  was  only  a 
nominal  King,  and  had  no  power  at  all ;  that  his 
annual  income  was  300  dollars,  which  he  received  from 
his  Governors  ;  and  besides  which  he  has  a  share  in  the 
butter  which  is  sold  in  the  market  place. 


This  afternoon  I  was  present  at  a  baptismal  service, 
to  which  INIamhera  Tseddoo  had  also  invited  j\Ir. 
Krapf,  but  who  declined  the  invitation.  Two  grown 
lip  Mahomedans  were  baptized;  one  of  them  a  man, 
a  native  of  Gui'ague,  the  other  a  girl  about  four- 
teen years  old,  from  the  Dankali  countrj^  both  of  whom 
were  slaves  ;  with  two  little  children,  a  boy  and  a  girl. 
The  service  was  performed  under  trees  in  the  church- 
yard of  St.  George's.  There  were  present  several 
deacons  and  school  boys,  the  persons  to  be  baptized, 
with  their  respective  god-fathers  and  god-mothers — 
each  male  having  a  god-father,  and  each  female  a 
god-mother — and  the  priest  Tseddoo ;  in  all  about 
twenty  persons.  Tseddoo  with  one  of  the  Deacons, 
both  clad  in  coloured  Siu'at  cloth,  were  the  chief  agents. 
The  semce  commenced  in  the  greatest  possible  disor- 
der, all  running  to  and  fro.  A  deacon  began  to  sing, 
and  exhorted  to  prayer ;  whereupon  all  joined  to  make 
a  great  clamour,  singing  the  Wadassieh  INIariam.  A 
large  broken  jar,  instead  of  the  baptismal  font,  was  then 
brought ;  when,  after  a  little  more  singing,  the  Priest 
Tseddoo  inquired  after  the  persons  to  be  baptized, 
their  god-fathers  and  god-mothers,  and  then  laid  his 
hands  on  the  heads  of  the  candidates.  The  Nicene 
Creed  and  the  Lord's  Prayer  were  then  repeated,  and 
the  third  Chapter  of  St.  John's  Gospel  read  with  the  ut- 
most rapidity.  The  baptismal  jar  was  then  filled  \\ith 
water,  and  consecrated  in  the  following  manner. 
Tseddoo  held  it  over  a  censer  filled  with  frankincense. 


having  an  iron  cross  in  the  other  hand ;  and  bowing 
himself  over  the  water,  sang,  "  Blessed  be  the  Father, 
and  the  Son,  and  the   Holy   Ghost ;"  then  raising  his 
voice   as  loudly  as  he  could,   exclaimed,    "  One  Holy' 
Father,"  at  the  same  time   di-awing  the  cross  through 
the  water  in  a  cross  direction,  and  touching  the  jar  on 
four  opposite  parts  in  the  form  of  a   cross — "  And  one 
Holy  Son  " — repeating  the  same  ceremony — "  And  one 
Holy  Spirit,"  performing  the   same  act,  while  the  by- 
standers sang.     The  candidates  then  approached,  led  or 
carried  by  their  sponsors,     Tseddoo  and  the    assisting 
Deacon  each  took    from  the    sponsors  one  candidate, 
carrying  the   children    under   the    arm,    and    taking 
the    grown-up  candidates  by  their  beads,    and   made 
them   worship  in    a     circle,    toward    the    fom-  direc- 
tions of  the   horizon,    the  Father,  the    Son,  and  the 
Holy  Spirit.     The  childi-en  were  then  taken  up,   and 
dipped  in  the  water  up  to  the  loins ;  first  in  the  name 
of   the  Father  ;    then  in  the  name  of  the   Son,    and, 
in  the  name  of  the  Holy  Spirit,  they  were  quite  im- 
mersed under  the   water,  when  the  words  were  pro- 
noimced  :  "  N.   N.  I  baptize  thee  in  the  name  of  the 
Father,  and  the  Son,  and  the  Holy   Spirit."     The  two 
grown  up  individuals  were  ordered  to  undress  themselves 
entirely,  and  sit  on  the  ground.     A  bason  full  of  water 
was  then  three  times  poured    over  them,  with  which 
they  were  ordered  to  wash  themselves  so  that  the  water 
might  be  taken  to  every  part  of  the  body,  the  priest  at 
the  same  time  repeating  with  each  of  them  the  words 

THE   ZELANES.  157 

of  baptism:  ''N.  N.  I  baptize  thee,  &c."  Tliey  then 
presented  to  the  priest  a  horn  full  of  merom — the  sacred 
oil — into  which  four  cotton  cords  were  dipped ;  one  of 
which  the  priest  took  out  for  each  person  baptized,  with 
which  he  made  the  sign  of  the  cross  on  theii-  foreheads, 
and  then  tied  it  round  their  necks,  pronouncing  a  bless- 
ing over  each  of  them.  They  then  sang  again,  and  thus 
the  service  was  finished.  After  this,  all  went  into  the 
Church,  in  order  to  see  the  communion  administered  to 
the  newly  baptized  persons.  I  also  entered  the  Church, 
to  witness  that  rite  ;  but  as  it  lasted  too  long,  I  could 
not  persuade  myself  to  stay  to  the  close. 

October  30,  1839 — The  man  of  Gondar,  who  was 
with  us  yesterday,  called  again  to-day.  We  asked  him 
about  the  Zelanes,  a  people  mentioned  in  Mr.  Gobat's 
Joiirnal,  He  said,  that  the  Zelanes  of  Amhara  were 
the  same  as  those  called  in  Shoa,  "  Abelam ; "  and 
that  both  are  wandering  shepherds,  and  have  the  same 
religious  ideas  with  other  Abyssinians  ;  and  that  in 
Shoa,  an  Alaca  is  placed  over  them.  He  added,  that 
they  were  a  good  people.  The  people,  called  Falashas, 
he  said  on  Good  Friday  butcher  a  she-goat,  which  they 
hang  up  and  lash,  to  put  an  affront  upon  the  Messiah 
of  the  Christians.  He  also  informed  us,  that  there  was 
another  people  called  Figen,  dwelling  in  the  district  of 
Baksa,  in  the  province  of  Kuara,  who  have  no  religious 
communion,  either  with  Christians  or  Mahomedans. 
Figen  means  "bad,"  and  they  are  said  to  be  mur- 
derers and  sorcerers,   and  able  by  their  enchantment 


to  fix  the  elephant  on  a  certain  spot,  so  that  he  cannot 
move.  They  kill  this  beast,  and  sell  its  teeth  to  the 
people  of  Kuara  and  Agow.  The  Kamauntes,  he  said, 
dwell  particularly  in  Dembea,  Woggora,  and  Kerker. 
They  have  priests  and  receive  baptism ;  but  are  said  to 
practise  particular  ceremonies  in  the  forests.  They 
have  a  great  esteem  for  the  cactus  plant,  from  which 
they  think  that  mankind  had  its  origin.  They  call 
God,  "the  glory."  "WTien  any  of  them  dies,  they  pre- 
pare a  great  Tescar.  They  will  only  eat  the  meat  which 
has  been  slaughtered  by  the  Abyssinians  on  Satui'day. 
I  do  not  know  whether  the  Abyssinians  are  prevented 
from  eating  with  them ;  but  if  they  eat  with  a  Falasha, 
they  are  excommunicated  by  the  priests.  The  Woitos, 
another  kind  of  people,  are  dwelling  on  the  shores  of 
the  lake  in  Dembea,  where  they  hunt  after  the  hippo- 
potamus, the  flesh  of  which  they  like  as  well  as  that  of 
other  beasts,  which  the  Abyssinians  detest.  This  people 
are  like  the  Wato  people  among  the  Gallas,  as  I  shall 
mention  hereafter. 

I  began  to-day  to  study  the  Galla  language  with  the 
assistance  of  my  Galla  servant. 

November  1,  1839 — Several  priests  and  Debteras 
came  to  see  us.  One  of  them  received  the  Acts  and 
the  Epistles  of  St.  Paul.  Arkadis,  the  teacher  of  our 
Guebra  Georgis,  complained  of  Guebra's  leaving  his 
school  and  being  too  much  with  us.  I  requested  him 
to  let  the  boy  come  to  me  when  he  had  finished  his 
lesson  in  school ;  which  he  promised  to  do. 

GALL  A   TRIBES.  159 

November  2 — Guebra  Georgis  did  not  come  to-day. 
I  understand  that  having  become  too  free  in  opposing 
the  Abyssinian  errors,  his  father,  as  well  as  his  teacher, 
had  endeavom'ed  to  draw  him  away  from  me,  or  at  least 
to  let  him  come  very  seldom  for  my  instruction.  In  the 
afternoon  I  read  in  Genesis  with  sLx  boys,  who  have 
come  to  me  from  different  Churches.  A  Debtera  hearing 
me  speak  about  sin  and  death,  represented  the  con- 
nexion of  sin  and  death  in  these  words :  "  Sin  is  the 
needle,  and  death  the  thread." 

November  3,  Lord's  Day — To-day  I  read  with 
Guebra  Georgis  the  first  five  chapters  of  Exodus ;  and 
then  read  Chm-ch  History  \\\i\i  him,  as  far  as  the  pro- 
pagation of  the  Gospel  through  Gregorius  Illimiinator 
in  Armenia,  and  through  Trumcatus  and  Edesius  in 

November  4 — To-day  I  began  to  read  the  Epistle 
of  St.  James  with  Tseddoo,  showing  him  the  connexion 
there  is  between  good  works  and  real  faith,  which  is 
preached  so  strongly  by  St.  Paul.  In  the  afternoon 
we  heard  that  the  Governor  had  made  ready  the  provi- 
sions for  Mr.  Isenberg,  and  that  Wulasma  ]\Iahomed 
had  sent  word  to  set  out  immediately. 



November  %,  1839 — Mr.  Isenberg  departed  to-day, 
and  I  accompanied  him  to  Farri,  on  the  ft-ontier  of 

November  12 — This  morning  I  bid  farewell  to  my 
Brother  Isenberg,  recommending  him  to  our  covenant 
God,  on  his  long  jom-ney.  IVIy  heart  was  deeply  moved, 
and  I  could  not  but  weep,  knoA\dng  that  I  was  alone  in 
this  country.  The  words  of  Christ,  Lo,  lam  with  you 
alway,  even  unto  the  end  of  the  tcorld,  strengthened 

November  13 — Tlie  King  retm*ned  from  his  expedi- 
tion against  the  Gallas  in  jNIugher.  M.  Rochet,  who 
had  accompanied  the  King,  gave  me  some  particulars 
about  this  exnedition.     They  marched,  he  said,  through 

KINDNESS    OF    THE    KING.  161 

the  tribes  of  Abedtshoo^  Gelan,  Woberi,  Betsho,  Mugher, 
and  Fajab  ;  that  among  the  tribe  Fajah,  they  found,  on  a 
mountain,  twelve  churches,  and  a  number  of  Christians, 
who  had  been  preserved  a  long  time  in  the  midst  of 
barbarous  heathens ;  and  that  twenty  Gallas  had  been 
killed  on  this  expedition. 

November  14 — Alaca  Sekima  came  to  see  me  in 
the  morning.  He  told  me  about  some  ancient  saints, 
who  had  pulled  out  their  eyes  and  cast  them  before 
\'ultures,  and  who  had  rode  on  lions.  I  said,  that  if  they 
did  that,  they  were  not  saints,  because  a  saint  kept 
God's  ^\'ord,  which  connuands  us  not  to  mutilate  our 
bodies ;  and  that  a  true  saint  humbled  himself  under 
the  grace  of  God ;  and  employed  his  powers  of  body 
and  soul  in  the  service  of  his  jVIaker  and  for  the  good 
of  his  fellow-creatures. 

In  the  afternoon,  I  went  to  see  Alaca  Wolda  Hanna, 
who  is  sick.  Afterward,  the  King's  boy  brought  me  a 
sheep  and  some  bread,  and  asked  whether  I  wanted 
an)i;hing  else  ;  adding,  that  as  my  brother  Isenberg  had 
left,  the  King  felt  a  tender  care  for  me. 

November  15 — The  boy  came  again  and  inquired 
after  my  wants.  The  blind  Habta  Mariam  came,  to 
whom  I  explained  Rom.  viii.  and  ix. 

November  16 — Studying  the  Galla  language.  In 
the  Scripture  lessons  I  read  Col.  ii.  and  iii.,  explain- 
ing to  my  people  the  duties  of  childi'cn,  fathers  and 
mothers,  servants  and  masters. 

To-day  Tseddoo  spoke  about  Saturday,  which  they 


celebrate  something  like  the  people  of  Godtsham.  I  said^ 
"  The  Word  of  God  commands  us  to  work  six  days,  and 
to  rest  on  the  seventh ;  but  you  say,  that  people  should 
labom*  five  days,  and  rest  from  work  two  days.  As 
regards  the  Day  of  rest,  you  do  not  strictly  keep  Satur- 
day or  Sunday ;"  proving  my  words  by  referring  to  their 
actions.  I  then  told  him  how  it  was  that  in  the  pri- 
mitive Church  both  days  were  celebrated,  and  that  the 
celebration  of  Saturday  was  abrogated  afterward. 
Finally,  I  showed  him  the  necessity  of  resting  in  God 
every  day.  He  then  said,  that  Christ  was  born  on  Sun- 
day, as  it  is  written  in  the  book  of  Sena  Fetrat.  On 
asking  him  for  pi'oofs  of  the  divine  authority  of  this 
book,  he  was  silent.  My  Galla  servant  told  me,  that 
his  people  paid  great  reverence  to  the  Lord's  Day ;  that 
they  did  not  work  on  that  day,  nor  sleep  with  their 
wives ;  and  that  they  rose  up  early  before  day  break, 
to  pray  to  the  AYake.  They  call  the  Sunday,  Sanbata 
Gadda — Great  Sabbath — in  opposition  to  Sanbata 
Tena,  which  means.  Little  Sabbath. 

November  17,  1839 — I  saw  this  afternoon  a  sad 
spectacle.  Five  hundi-ed  slaves  were  brought  to  Anko- 
bar  from  Gurague.  WTien  will  the  time  come  that 
slavery,  this  disgrace  of  mankind,  will  be  abolished  in 
all  Christian  countries ! 

Noveviher  18 — A  Debtera,  whose  name  is  Sentshar, 
had  a  long  conversation  with  me.  This  man  is  in  many 
respects  a  perfect  rationalist.  On  account  of  his  con- 
troversial spirit  with  the  priests  of  Shoa,  he  was  dis- 


missed  by  the  King,  but  has  since  been  restored,  and 
made  the  Alaca  of  a  cliiu'cli  in  the  neiglibom'liood  of 
Machfood.  He  began  by  saying,  that  childi-en  are 
born  free  from  sin,  white  Hke  snow ;  and  that  man  dies 
in  consequence  of  his  oa\ti  sin.  I  remarked,  first,  that 
Adam  om*  first  parent,  was  unclean  before  God  ;  and 
that  he  begat  children  in  his  own  image.  Secondly,  that 
Moses  declared  that  the  thoughts  and  desu'es  of  man 
were  sinful  from  a  child.  (Gen.  vi.  5.)  Thu'dly,  that 
death  is  the  wages  of  sin  (Rom.  \-ii.  23.)  ;  and  that  con- 
sequently as  childi-en  die,  they  cannot  be  without  sin  : 
that  is,  without  a  sinful  disposition,  which  they  inherit 
from  their  parents,  according  to  Psalm  li.  And 
Christ  also  says,  that  lohick  is  horn  of  the  flesh  is  flesh. 
(John  iii.  6.)  Fourthly,  that  had  not  Christ  been  born 
of  the  Holy  Ghost,  He  would  have  been  unclean  like 
ourselves,  and  disqualified  to  become  om*  Sa\'ioui\  He 
endeavoured  to  invalidate  this  last  argument,  and  then 
took  refuge  in  mystical  interpretations.  He  said,  that 
God  in  the  beginning  had  created  heaven  and  earth ; 
and  that  heaven  meant  '  godly ,^  and  earth  '  fleshly  : ' 
and  that  thus  childi-en  were  born  godly,  but  afterward 
became  fleshly.  I  proved  to  him,  that  Moses  spoke 
historically,  and  not  mystically  ;  and  then  showed  him 
the  bad  consequences  of  their  mode  of  explaining  the 
Bible.  He  then  said,  that  wheat  is  fij-st  good,  after- 
ward becomes  bad,  and  weed  is  seen  in  the  field.  I 
replied,  that  it  cannot  be  otherwise,  because  the  earth 
has  been  cursed  on  account  of  the  sin  of  Adam ;  so 


that  now  it  is  the  uatiu'c  of  the  earth  to  bring  forth 
weed,  and  wall  not  produce  good  fruit  unless  it  is 
cultivated.  Thus  the  nature  of  man  being  corrupt, 
cannot  but  produce  corruption,  if  not  renewed  by 
the  Holy  Spirit,  according  to  John  iii.  He  then  in- 
sisted upon  maintaining  that  man  becomes  sinful  by 
outward  seduction.  I  replied,  that  the  seduction  was 
first  inward,  as  St.  James  clearly  shows,  (chap,  i.) ;  that 
from  the  heart  proceed  evil  thoughts,  murders,  8^'c. 
Matt.  XV.  Besides,  if  sin  originated  only  in  outward 
seduction,  why  did  they  not  flee  from  it,  seeing  its 
bad  consequences  in  Adam ;  that  they  had  virtue  and 
strength  enough  to  do  so,  if  they  were  born  without 
corruption,  and  hence  needed  not  a  Savioui' ;  but  that 
the  whole  was  a  contradiction  to  Scripture,  which  tells 
us,  that  we  cannot  even  think  anything  good,  and  still 
less  do  any  real  good  work,  so  long  as  we  are  unrenewed 
by  the  Holy  Ghost. 

November  22,  1839 — Tseddoo  came  to  day,  to  speak 
about  the  archangel  Michael,  who,  he  said,  had  con- 
ducted the  Israelites  through  the  Red  Sea.  I  replied, 
You  are  in  contradiction  with  the  Word  of  God,  1  Cor.  x. 
We  then  spoke  about  the  power  of  the  priests,  but  were 
interrupted  by  Ay  to  Engeda,  who  came  to  see  me. 
While  he  was  with  us,  we  read  a  passage  in  the  book 
"  Amada  Mistir,"  on  which  I  made  some  remarks.  This 
book  states,  that  the  angel  Gabriel  came  to  Shoa  in 
the  figure  of  an  old  man.  I  asked,  whether  this  was 
written  in  the  Bible  ?  He  answered  in  the  nes-ative. 


"Well/'  I  replied,  "  why  do  you  teach  it,  if  you  have  no 
proof  of  it  in  God's  Word  ?  "  A5i:o  Engeda  said,  that  I 
had  spoken  the  truth.     In  another  part  of  this  book  it 
is  stated  that  the  humanity  of  Christ  returned  to  His 
Deity.  I  said,  that  was  an  unscriptural  confusion ;  that 
the  word  became  flesh,  as  St.  John   says;  but  that  we 
could  not  say,  that  the  flesh  became   God.     We  then 
spoke  about  saints,  and  that  it  was  a  sin  to  make  them 
our  mediators  and   Sanours.     I  said  that  if  we  had 
Christ,   we  had  all  with  him,  even  the  saints.     The 
priest  then  said,  "  But   all  our  books  come  from  you, 
the  people  of  Jerusalem."     I  repHed,  I  know  that  our 
fathers  and  those  of  the  Oriental  Church,  have,  in  many 
things,   gone  astray  from  the    truth;    but  that    God 
knowing  this  before,  had  given  His  Word,  and  promised 
to  guide  us  into  all  truth  by  His  Spirit,  that  we  might 
know  His  will  and  examine  the  doctrines  of  our  fathers, 
on  whom  we  were  not  to  found  our  faith ;  and  that  if 
we  were  to  rely  upon   our  fathers,  the  heathens  w^ould 
say  the  same  with  respect  to  their  religion.     With  re- 
gard to  ourselves,  the  Christians  of  the  West,   I  said, 
that  we  had,  three  hundred  years  ago,  left  the  errors  of 
our  fathers  and  followed  the  pure  Word  of  God,  pro- 
testing   against   all  human  traditions    and  additions ; 
and  therefore  we  were   called  Protestants.      Tseddoo 
then  said,  "Well,  allowing  this,  the  principal  thing  is  to 
keep  God's  word,  and  to  impart  our  goods  to  every 
body,  as  Christ  says.   Give  to  him  that  asketh  thee." 
I  asked,  Does  God  give  His  Spirit  to  wicked  men,  who 


will  not  leave  tlieir  sins  ?  He  answered,  that  He  did 
not.  "  But  does  not  God,"  I  said,  give  His  Holy  Spirit 
to  those  who  ask  for  it  with  a  real  desire  ?  "  He  re- 
plied in  the  affirmative.  "Well,"  I  said,  thus  we 
should  also  give  to  those  who  are  in  want  of  our  assis- 
tance, supposing  we  have  the  means  of  doing  so.  If 
Christ  says,  Give  to  him  that  asketh  thee,  that 
means  that  we  should  be  ready  to  assist  our  fellow- 
creatures  wherever  and  as  much  as  we  can."  Afterward 
I  had  Church  History  with  Guebra  Georgis  and  others. 
Then  Alaca  Tesfa  came  begging  me  for  a  copy  of  the 
Amharic  Psalms,  which  I  gave  him.  Two  Debteras 
also  came  and  asked,  whether  it  was  true  that  our 
Book  of  Psalms  contained  three  hundred  Psalms. 
I  said,  that  it  was  not;  that  we  were  content 
AA-ith  an  hundi-ed  and  fifty  Psalms ;  and  that  we  should 
keep  these  in  our  hearts  and  become  a  holy  people 
like  David  was.  I  then  spoke  about  their  contents 
being  useful  in  various  situations  of  life,  and  found 
fault  with  the  Abyssinian  custom  of  reciting  them 
so  often. 

November  23,  1839— During  my  reading  with 
several  boys,  Sentshar  came  again,  bringing  with  him 
a  book  called  "  Meelad."  He  said,  that  Christ  him- 
self had  maintained  in  John  ix.  that  neither  the  blind 
man  nor  his  parents  were  culpable,  and  consequently 
a  sinful  corruption  did  not  communicate  itself  to 
childi'en.  I  said,  that  this  passage  did  not  at  all 
prove  what  he  wished — that  he  should  have  a  regard 


to  the  question  of  Christ's  disciples^  as  well  as  Christ's 
answer — that  if  God  inflicts  great  distress  upon  a  man 
(like  Job),  people  are  ready  to  say,  that  he  must  have 
been  a  great  sinner,  else  he  would  not  have  to  undergo 
so  many  calamities — and  that  the  disciples  of  Christ 
judging  thus,  asked  their  INIaster,  whether  the  blind 
man  before  his  birth  committed  a  particular  sin,  or 
whether  his  parents  had  not  sinned  in  such  a  manner, 
that  their  sin  was  punished  in  theii*  son ;  but  that  Jesus 
disowned  both,  saying,  that  the  reason  was  that  the 
works  of  God  work  might  be  manifested.  Hence  this 
passage,  I  said,  does  not  speak  about  the  connexion 
between  the  corruption  of  children  and  their  parents  ; 
but  that  the  principal  scope  of  it  is  to  show,  that  great 
bodily  calamities  are  sometimes  inflicted  upon  persons 
for  reasons  unknown  to  human  understanding ;  and  that 
we  are  not  allowed  to  judge  in  such  a  case  un- 
kindly, or  according  to  our  ideas  about  the  moral  cha- 
racter of  our  fellow-crcatm'es.  Ha\ing  given  Sentshar 
an  explanation  of  this  passage,  I  proceeded  to  streng- 
then my  former  proofs  of  the  sinful  corruption  in  which 
children  are  born.  A\Tien  speaking  about  the  impu- 
tation of  the  sin  of  Adam,  I  remarked,  that  though  we 
became  sinners  on  account  of  Adam,  yet  that  God  in 
His  love  did  not  for  Christ's  sake  impute  sin  to  us : 
however,  we  are  under  the  law  of  death.  He  then  asked, 
why  we  must  die,  as  we  had  not  deserved  it  like  Adam. 
I  said,  that  we  must  die  on  account  of  our  sinful  nature; 
and  that  supposing  this  were  not  so,  yet  we  had  deserved 


nothing;  tliat  God  liad  created  our  souls  to  immor- 
tality ;  and  that  Christ  himself  died,  who  had  not  de- 
served death.  Thus  God  could  let  children  die,  though 
they  had  not  deserved  it.  In  short,  children  are  born 
with  a  sinful  natvu-e  derived  from  Adam ;  and  that  on 
account  of  their  corrupt  nature  are  childi-en  of  God's 
WTath  and  must  che.  That  God  does  not  impute  this 
sinful  state  to  them  as  their  own ;  but  forgives  it  for 
Christ's  sake,  and  declares  this  forgiveness  in  baptism, 
and  which  therefore  is  a  strong  proof  of  man's  natural 
corruption ;  and  that  the  corrupt  nature  communicated 
by  Adam  and  to  us  by  our  parents,  is  the  real  source  of 
om'  own  sins  and  punishment.  I  then  spoke  about  the 
necessity  of  a  mediator,  and  the  way  of  receiving  him. 

Afterward,  Sentshar  endeavoured  to  prove  their  chro- 
nology from  Luke  i.  26.,  when  the  angel  Gabriel  was 
sent  to  Mary  in  the  sixth  month  after  he  had  been  sent 
to  Zacharias.  A  month,  he  said,  was  a  thousand  years, 
because  David  said,  one  day  is  as  a  thousand  years  before 
God.  I  replied,  that  if  he  reckoned  in  this  allegorical 
way,  he  must  count  30,000  years,  because  David  did  not 
say  that  a  thousand  years  were  like  a  month,  but  one 
day.  Then  I  showed  him  how  our  chronology  is  got  in 
a  historical  way.  He  then  spoke  about  a  book  called 
Kufahe,  in  which  is  contained  what  God  said  to 
Moses  on  the  mountain  during  forty  days.  I  said,  that 
all  that  was  necessary  for  us  to  know  respecting  that 
holy  discourse  was  wTitten  in  the  Pentateuch.  A  strong 
proof,  I  said,  that  we  should  not  know  what  God  had 


not  revealed  was  to  be  found  in  Rev.  x.  4.,  where  St.  John 
was  prevented  from  writing  what  the  seven  thunders 
had  uttered ;  and  that  it  was  only  human  curiosity  that 
wished  to  disclose  what  God  had  concealed.  Sentshar 
then  spoke  about  St.  Mary. 

November  26,  1839 — M.  Rochet  communicated  to  me 
his  plan  of  going  to  Sentshero,  and  returning  by  way  of 
Enarea.  A  Debtera  then  came,  and  said  that  blasphemy 
was  no  sin  ;  but  I  showed  him  the  contrary  from  Matt. 
XV.,  and  the  example  of  Michael  the  Archangel  in  the 
Epistle  of  St.  Jude.  In  the  evening,  M.  Rochet  brought 
me  a  number  of  potatoes,  which  he  had  obtained  from 
the  King,  who  received  them  from  Mr.  Isenberg  at 
Adowah.  I  planted  them,  and  they  have  gro^Mi  up  very 

November  28—1  read  Rom.  x.  to  the  blind  Debtera, 
and  afterward  went  to  see  the  Governor  of  the  town. 
As  the  small-pox  was  said  to  exist  in  the  north  of  Shoa, 
I  asked  Guebra  what  remedy  was  used  in  Abyssinia 
against  it.  He  said,  that  they  made  an  incision  in  the 
fore  arm,  and  put  therein  the  lymph  from  an  infected 
person,  covering  it  with  wool.  This  operation  stood  the 
test,  as  Guebra  himself  had  experienced.  The  scar 
was  still  to  be  seen  on  his  arm.  The  vaccination  of 
Europe  is  not  yet  known  to  the  Abyssinians,  they  being 
content  with  the  inoculation  of  the  small-pox.  How- 
ever, they  do  not  think  of  inoculating,  till  the  small- 
pox has  broken  out  in  their  neighbourhood.  When 
the  disease  exists  at  x\nkobar,   the  King  retires  to  the 



village  of  ]\Iacliel  Wans,  where  no  one  is  admitted  to  his 
presence,  as  he  is  in  great  fear  of  being  infected.  Mer- 
chants and  travellers  are  also  prevented  from  entering 
Shoa.  Thus  we  have  an  example  of  a  cordon  militaire 
in  Abyssinia. 

November  29,  1839— Studying  the  Galla  language.  A 
Debtera  asked  me,  vi-hether  it  would  be  sin  if  he  took  a 
second  wife,  his  fii-st  having  died.  I  directed  him  to  Rom. 
vii.  2.  He  was  surprised  at  not  having  before  seen  my 
meaning  in  this  passage.  When  we  spoke  about  fast- 
ing, I  remarked,  that  a  new  birth,  and  not  fasting,  was 
the  condition  of  entering  into  the  kingdom  of  Christ. 

November  30 — Debtera  Habta  Selassie  came  to  see 
me.     He  spoke  about  the  bush  of  Moses,  which  he  ex- 
plained as  being  applicable  to  Mary,  she  having  brought 
forth  Christ  without  being  consumed.     This  matter  led 
me   to   remark   on   the  necessity  of  interpreting  the 
Scriptures  in  a  historical  and  grammatical  way.     After- 
ward, our  Workie  began  to  dispute  vehemently  mth  me, 
saying,  that  it  was  insolent  to  maintain  that  Mary  had 
other  childi-en  besides  Christ.     I    read  Matt.  i.   25  ; 
Mark  iii.  32—35  ;  John  i.  3 ;  Acts  i.  14 ;  1   Cor.  ix. 
5  ;  and  said,  that  from  these  passages  we  might  con- 
clude that  Mary  had  childi-en  by  Joseph.     But   as  he 
bitterly  opposed  and  declaimed  against  the  Protestant 
Chm-ches,  I  du-ected  the  discom-se  to  practical  remarks. 
He  is  a  selfish  and  self-righteous  man.     I  should  not 
wish  his    sons,    who    are    educated   in    Dr.   Wilson's 
School  at  Bombay,  to  come  here  as  long  as  he  resides 

VISIT    FROM    x\LACA    SEKTMA.  171 

in  this  country,  as  he  would  become  rather  an  obstacle 
to  them. 

In  the  evening  I  read  an  account  of  the  late  Rev.  T. 
Blumhardt.  I  related  to  my  people  several  important 
facts,  which  pleased  them  much.  I  much  wish  that  a 
short  history  of  Missions  were  translated  into  Amharic 
or  ^Ethiopic. 

December  1 — Workie  endeavoured  to  attack  the  doc- 
trine of  the  English  Church  respecting  the  Lord's  Sup- 
per, and  spoke  about  the  various  sects  of  England,  of 
w^hich  he  had  heard  dming  his  stay  at  Bombay.  I 
made  him  feel  and  know,  in  a  friendly  manner,  that  he 
was  unacquainted  with  our  doctrines  and  his  own  heart. 
I  endeavour  to  the  utmost  to  remain  on  friendly  terms 
wath  this  proud  man,  as  I  know  how  much  harm  he 
could  do  to  my  work  in  this  country,  if  he  let 
loose  his  bitter  spirit  against  me.  We  brought  him 
from  Cairo  to  this  countiy  without  entering  into  an  en- 
gagement with  him,  being  then  of  opinion  that  he 
would  prove  useful  in  maintaining  our  connexion 
with  the  sea-coast ;  but  time  has  shown  that  he  seeks 
only  his  own  interest. 

In  the  afternoon  Alaca  Sekima  called  upon  me. 
He  spoke  about  Samuel,  a  former  saint  of  Abyssinia, 
who  rode  on  lions.  I  reminded  him  of  what  1  had 
formerly  said  against  this  folly.  He  then  spoke  of 
Eostatius,  Tecla  Haimanot,  and  Antonius,  monks  who 
had  each  instituted  a  particular  religious  order.  The 
monk  Samuel  has  also  his  followers  in  Abyssinia. 

I  -2 


Sentshar  came  again  to  dispute  about  the  three  births 
of  Christ.  He  saicl^  that  in  Lukeii.  11.,  Christ,  which 
name  meant  "  anointed,"  was  called  so  at  His  birth. 
Hence  there  were,  first,  His  eternal  birth ;  secondly.  His 
birth  in  the  flesh;  and  thirdly,  the  unction  of  the  Holy 
Ghost  in  the  womb,  which  they  call  the  third  birth.  I 
remarked,  that  they  could  not  prove  the  third  birth  from 
the  passage  quoted,  because  the  Son  of  God  is  called  "  the 
anointed"  in  Psalm  ii.  2 ;  and,  secondly,  the  Prophet 
Daniel  tells  us  his  name,  (chap.  ix.  26.) ;  consequently, 
according  to  their  view,  He  must  have  been  anointed  at 
the  time  of  the  Old  Testament,  when  the  Word  had 
not  yet  become  flesh.  In  the  same  way  He  was  called 
by  the  name  of  Jesus,  (Matt,  i.)  before  He  had  saved 
mankind.  Christ  is  related  to  both  natm'es.  His  being 
called  "  the  anointed,"  relates  only  to  His  humanity , 
■v\hich  was  anointed  when  He  was  about  to  perform  the 
work  of  om-  redemption.  You  must  not  separate  the  his- 
torical connexion  of  the  Gospel.  The  baptism  of  Christ 
and  His  unction  of  the  Holy  Ghost,  stand  in  connexion 
with  the  beginning  of  His  work  :  Matt,  iii  andiv. ;  Luke 
iii.  and  iv.  Sentshar  is  an  extravagant  Monophysite ;  for 
he  said,  that  the  godhead  died  and  fasted  in  the  huma- 
nity of  Christ.  He  then  spoke  about  the  mu-acles  of 
Tecla  Haimanot,  who  had  converted  a  very  impious 
heathen.  I  related  to  him  the  history  of  the  Missions 
on  the  Feejee  and  the  Friendly  Islands. 

December  4, 1839 — Tliis  morning  I  was  attacked  with 
fever.     A  sick  man  in  this  country  is  in  a  pitiable  con- 

ON    "THE    THREE   BIRTHS/'  173 

dition,  as  the  people  immediately  run  together^  weep- 
ing, giving  their  foolish  counsels,  and  speaking  of  devils 
and  exorcism. 

December  5 — I  was  much  better  this  morning.  A 
dose  of  tartar  emetic  and  quinine  did  me  good  yester- 
day. Sentshar  came  again  to  dispute  -,  but  I  turned 
the  discourse  to  real  conversion,  according  to  John  iii. 
The  deadness  of  the  Abyssinians  casts  me  down  very 
often.  They  hear  wdth  one  ear,  and  let  it  pass  through 
the  other.  I  finished  the  first  chapter  of  John  in  my 
Galla  translation. 

December'  7 — To-day  Tsoma  Ledat  commenced.  This 
fast  is  in  remembrance  of  Christ's  incarnation.  The 
monks  only  are  obliged  to  keep  it.  I  read  to  Habta 
Mariam  Rom.  xii  and  xiii.  Sentshar  asked  for  a 
Pentateuch,  which  I  gave  him. 

December  8 — Alaca  Sekima  came.  He  said  that 
I  should  make  him  my  confessor,  or  nafs-abat ;  be- 
cause if  I  should  die,  nobody  would  absolve  me.  I 
said,  that  it  was  Christ  to  whom  I  daily  confessed 
my  sins,  and  I  knew  that  He  absolves  me  for  the  sake 
of  His  sufferings  and  death  ;  that  if  Christ  shut  me  out 
of  His  kingdom,  the  confessor  could  not  open  it  to  mc ; 
and  that  if  Christ  has  opened,  nobody  can  shut.  Tlicn 
Sekima  spoke  about  the  late  Muallcm,  an  Armenian, 
who  was  considered  the  Abuna  of  Shoa;  and  who, 
when  angry  with  his  servants,  had  thrown  away  all  the 
Zatsh  (hydromel)  which  was  in  his  house.  I  replied, 
that  it  did  not  become  a  Christian,   and   still  less   an 


Abuua,  to  waste  God's  gifts.  Afterward,  several  boys 
came,  to  whom  I  read  a  little  tract  which  I  had  trans- 
lated, containing  the  essential  doctrines  of  the 

December  11, 1839— Guebra  Georgis,  who  some  days 
ago  was  attacked  by  fever,  is  getting  better.  I  gave  him 
the  medicine  which  I  had  found  useful  myself.  This 
morning  a  Governor  of  the  WoUo  Gallas  came,  begging 
me  for  medicine  against  epilepsy.  He  said,  that  he  had 
tried  the  efficacy  of  anmlets  written  by  Christians  and 
jMahomedans,  but  that  they  were  all  of  no  use.  After- 
ward, I  finished  wdth  Guebra  Georgis  the  second  period 
of  Church  History,  speaking  about  Pelagius,  Augusti- 
nus,  and  Origen,  the  latter  of  whom  is  considered  a 
heretic   in  Abyssinia. 

December  13 — We  came  in  Chm-ch  History  to  Ma- 
homed. I  showed  that  Mahomed  did  not  know  the 
nature  of  sin,  as  well  as  God's  justice  and  holiness ; 
and  therefore  he  was  not  in  want  of  a  Sa^doiu- ;  that 
the  extravagances  of  Christians  at  his  time  contri- 
buted much  to  his  rising ;  and  that  the  speedy  propa- 
gation of  his  rehgion  was  produced  by  his  sword  and 
fleshly  religious  ideas.  We  then  spoke  about  Diony- 
sius  Areopagita,  who  is  highly  esteemed  by  the  Abys- 
sinians.  I  showed  that  neither  Kyi'ill,  Athanasius, 
nor  Chrysostom,  knew  his  works ;  consequently  they 
could  not  have  been  wa-itten  by  the  Dionysius  men- 
tioned in  Acts  x\di. ;  and  that  it  was  usual  at  that  time 
for  impostors  to  \\Tite  useless  books,  which  they  stamped 

MISSION    TO    THE   GALLAS.  175 

with  apostolical  names  to  procure  an  access  to  their 
contemporai'ies  on  behalf  of  their  lies.  Guebra  said, 
"  I  have  understood  this."  I  should  like  if  a  number  of 
priests  would  study  Chm'ch  History. 

December  14 — This  morning  I  reflected  much 
upon  going  to  the  Gallas,  being  grieved  at  the  indiffer- 
ence of  the  Abyssinian  Christians,  and  encouraged 
myself  to  study  the  language  of  the  Galla  people.  I 
also  reflected  upon  the  principles  which  I  should  adopt 
in  my  translation.  I  had  hitherto  used  the  Amharic 
characters ;  but  observing  that  the  Galla  language  is  no 
Semitic  one,  that  Avriting  in  Amharic  has  many  incon- 
veniences, and  that  perhaps  the  ^Vord  of  God  may  go 
forth  from  the  Gallas  to  the  whole  of  Abyssinia,  I 
thought  it  better  to  use  the  Latin  characters,  employ- 
ing for  the  words  not  found  in  the  Galla  language  the 
characters  of  the  Abyssinian  languages,  on  account  of 
the  national  connexion  of  both  countries.  I  know 
that  in  using  foreign  characters  I  shall  be  opposed  by 
the  Abyssinian  priests,  who  wish  nothing  else  but  the 
J^thiopic  to  be  circulated.  May  the  Lord  help  me  in 
this  work  to  the  glory  of  His  Name  ! 

December  15 — To-day  I  finished  reading  the  Epis- 
tle of  St.  Paul  to  the  Romans  with  the  blind  Debtera 
Habta  Mai'iam.  I  briefly  rcjieated  the  whole  contents, 
particularly  the  doctrines  of  sin  and  grace,  and  exhorted 
this  man  to  yield  up  his  whole  heart  to  Christ,  who 
would  give  him  spii'itual  understanding  and  eternal  life, 
if    he   received  the  doctrines   of  the  Gospel    into    his 


heart.  I  then  related  to  him  the  case  of  a  poor  bHnd 
woman  in  my  country,  who  having  heard  this  Epistle 
read,  had  retained  it  in  her  memory,  and  received  into 
her  heart,  till  her  death,  when  she  left  this  world  in 
faith  and  triumph. 

Several  priests  came  in  the  course  of  this  day  to  beg 
for  books.  I  distributed  three  copies  of  the  New  Tes- 
tament and  a  copy  of  the  Pentateuch.  They  requested 
^Ethiopic  copies,  which  I  was  unable  to  give  them. 

December  18,  1839 — As  the  father  of  Guebra  Georgis 
had  directed  me  to  read  with  Guebra  the  Gospel  of  St. 
j\Iark  in  ^thiopic,  I  complied  with  his  w4sh ;  but  I  also 
read  it  in  Amharic.  \\lien  I  have  finished  with  him 
Church  History,  I  intend  to  introduce  him  to  the 
biblical  books,  having  already  translated  a  treatise  con- 
taining the  following  points  :  The  many  ways  in  which 
God  has  revealed  Himself  to  mankind — that  the  prin- 
cipal subject  of  biblical  history  is  the  Kingdom  of  God — 
the  way  in  which  the  Bible  took  its  rise — the  evidences 
that  the  Bible  is  the  Word  of  God — how  the  Bible 
came  to  us — how  it  is  to  be  read — and  the  names  of 
the  Books  and  their  principal  contents. 

In  the  afternoon  a  Debtera  came  and  spoke  much 
about  evil  spirits,  budos,  and  amulets.  I  expressed  my 
gi'ief  at  learning  that  the  Debteras,  called  Christians, 
vised  from  ignorance  and  worldly  interest  to  write  amu- 
lets for  the  Gallas ;  showed  him  the  uselessness  and 
sinfulness  of  such  practices ;  and  exhorted  him  to 
the  duty  of  the  Debteras  instinicting  their  own  people. 


as  well  as  the  Gallas,  in  scriptiu-al  and  other  useful 

December  19 — Read  with  Guebra  in  the  Gospel ; 
afterward  the  Introduction  to  the  Bible.  Debtera 
Habta  Selassie  being  with  us,  manifested  delight  in  this 
study.  The  father  of  Guebra  came,  and  spoke  about 
the  Tabiban  before-mentioned;  and  said,  that  he  with 
a  friend  once  at  night  listened  to  their  prayers,  when 
they  prayed  to  the  Angel  Phanuel  that  the  Messiah 
might  come  veiy  soon. 

December  20 — Guebra  with  other  people  seeing  in  my 
room  a  Ti'eatise,  printed  in  German,  called,  "  The  book 
of  the  heart  of  a  sinner,'^  with  pictures,  was  much 
struck  ;  and  wished  to  have  it  in  Amharic,  A\nth  the 
pictures.  I  finished  Genesis  with  several  boys  who  have 
come  regularly  for  the  last  month. 

December  21 — To-day  I  received  news  from  Tigre 
through  a  servant  of  Hadji  Johannes  at  Adowah.  I 
learned  that  Kidana  iMariam,  the  former  servant  of  Mr. 
Isenberg,  had  died  at  Jiddah,  where  he  was  mth  Mr. 
Shimpei*,  a  German  Botanist ;  and  that  three  Euro- 
peans had  also  arrived  at  Adowah,  with  several  Catholic 

Abder  Rachman,  the  dragoman  of  Mr.  Rochet,  came 
to  see  me.  He  is  a  native  of  Argobba.  He  attempted 
to  prove  that  the  Argobbanians  came  from  Sana,  in 
Arabia  ;  and  that  the  Gallas  entered  into  Abyssinia  by 
way  of  Mecca  and  Jiddah.  I  told  him  that  the  Gallas  had 
nothing  common    with    the  Arabians,   either  in   their 

178  THE    ALACA   OF    MANS. 

language  or  religion ;  besides  which,  the  Abyssinian 
books  stated  that  the  Gallas  came  from  the  south 
of  Abyssinia.  As  to  the  Argobbanians,  I  said,  that 
he  wished  to  derive  the  rise  of  his  people  from  the 
holy  land  of  the  Mahomedans.  He  then  said,  that 
ar  (or  bar)  means  silk ;  and  gobba  cloth,  because 
the  Argobbanians  had  formerly  worn  clothes  of  silk, 
when  they  came  from  Arabia.  As  for  the  rest,  the 
language  of  Argobba  is  said  to  be  nearly  the  same  as 
that  of  Horror. 

Two  priests  of  Gurague  afterward  called,  and  spoke 
to  me  about  a  petty  Christian  empire  called  Cambat,  in 
the  south  of  Gurague.  They  also  told  me,  that  the  Gallas 
pay  great  respect  to  the  serpent,  keeping  it  in  their 
houses,  and  feeding  it  with  milk;  and  that  some  of 
the  Gallas  are  of  opinion  that  the  serpent  was  the 
father  of  mankind.  All  that  these  priests  said  was 
confirmed  by  my  Galla  servant. 

December  25, 1839 — The  Alaca  of  Mans,  whose  name 
is  Wolda  Haimanot,  came  to  see  me.  He  is  the  Alaca 
of  thirty- eight  churches,  and  one  of  the  most  respected 
priests  of  Shoa,  and  loved  even  by  the  King.  He  asked 
whether  there  were  Mahomedans  in  my  country ;  and 
then  said,  '^We  Abyssinians  drink  from  the  well 
of  the  Patriarch  of  Alexandria."  I  rephed,  "  In  my 
country  we  di'ink  from  the  Word  of  God,  from 
Christ,  who  said,  I  am  the  way,  the  truth,  and  the 
life."  I  at  first  thought  that  he  came  to  dispute ;  but 
I  found  him  a  man  of  no  bitter   spirit.     He  begged 

GALL  A    TRIBE    ARROOSI.  179 

me  to  teach  him  the  names  of  the  Amharic  Alphabet, 
having  heard  that  I  knew  them.  I  complied  with  his 
request.  I  also  gave  him  a  copy  of  the  Epistles  of  St. 
Paul,  which  he  thankfully  received. 

December  26 — A  priest  of  Gurague  came  to  see 
me.  I  asked  him  about  the  Gallas  dwelling  in  the 
east  of  Gurague.  He  said,  that  the  most  powerful 
tribe  was  that  of  the  Arroosi  Gallas,  who  fought  quite 
naked  in  battle,  in  order  to  frighten  their  enemies  ; 
that  in  their  country  much  salt  was  obtained  and  ex- 
ported to  Gurague  and  the  Galla  countries  in  the 
neighbourhood  ;  and  that  there  was  a  great  lake,  called 
Laghi.  He  also  told  me  of  a  priest,  who  died  several 
years  ago  at  Ankobar,  who  had  travelled  from  Shoa  to 
Tadjurra,  from  thence  to  Cairo,  returning  by  way  of 
Sennar  to  Gondar;  and  that  afterward  he  went  to 
Enarea,  and  returned  by  way  of  Caffa,  Cambat,  and 
Gurague,  to  Ankobar,  where  he  died. 

In  the  lake  of  Gurague,  called  Suai,  five  islands  exist, 
in  which  the  treasm-es  of  the  ancient  Abyssinian  Kings, 
are  said  to  have  been  hidden  from  Gragne  when  he  en- 
tered Abyssinia.  That  there  are  ^thiopic  books  is  con- 
firmed by  a  man  whom  the  King  sent  there  as  a  spy.  The 
houses  of  the  Guragueans  are  described  as  being  much 
better  built  than  those  of  Shoa,  which,  by  the  Gm-agu- 
eans,  are  called  stables.  But  their  houses  are  widely 
separated  from  each  other;  and  hence  much  occasion  is 
given  to  kidnappers.  The  main  reason  of  this  sepa- 
rated   state   of    the    Gui-agueans    is,    I   am   told,    the 


enmity  of  the  people  one  against  the  other^  and  the 
total  want  of  civil  order.  Children  sleep  by  the  side 
of  their  parents ;  but^  notwithstanding  this,  kidnappers 
annually  take  a  great  number.  These  fellows  break 
through  the  walls  of  the  house  at  night,  put  a  large 
stick  upon  the  necks  of  the  parents,  and  take  away 
their  children  :  if  the  children  make  an  outcry,  they 
])ut  a  rag  into  their  mouths.  In  many  houses,  children 
sleep  on  beams  placed  across,  in  the  upper  part  of  the 
house ;  but  kidnappers  penetrate  also  to  that  place.  If 
the  walls  of  the  houses  should  be  too  strong,  the 
robbers  at  night  make  a  pit  around  the  house,  which  they 
set  on  fire;  when  the  inhabitants,  going  out,  fall  into  this 
trench,  and  are  seized,  with  their  children.  In  general,  the 
Guragueans  are  blamed  as  being  a  bad  people ;  as  they 
have  not  civil  authority,  and  are  surrounded  by  Gallas 
and  Mahomedans.  The  jurisdiction  of  Shoa  is  only  and 
slowly  extended  to  Aimellela,  on  the  frontier  of  Gu- 
rague  beyond  the  Hawash,  If  this  country  does  not 
get  soon  a  settled  order,  it  will  be  desolated  after  a  little 
time,  because  a  great  number  of  slaves  are  annually 
brought  from  thence.  One  brother  sells  the  children  of 
his  brother ;  and  the  people  are  stolen  in  going  from 
one  village  to  the  other. 

December  27,  1839 — This  morning  ten  priests  from 
Gurague  came  to  see  me.  They  arrived  here  yesterday. 
I  read  with  them  in  the  Gospel,  and  exhorted  them  to 
become  true  followers  of  Christ,  that  they  might  be  able 
to  teach  their  poor  people  and  the  surrounding  heathens. 


I  distributed  several  copies  of  the  New  Testament 
among  them.  They  told  me  about  a  country  called 
Wolamo^  beyond  Cambat,  where  there  are  Christians, 
but  without  priests  at  present.  Beyond  "VVolamo  is  a 
large  Galla  tribe,  called  Alaba.  Mr.  Ludolf  has  men- 
tioned the  Alabas  in  his  History.  About  Sentshero  they 
could  not  tell  me  much.  The  way  to  Cambat  conducts 
through  the  Adia  Galla  Tribes.  In  Gurague  is  a  hea- 
thenish people,  called  Fuga.  They  are  a  wandering 
people,  and  eat  all  that  the  Guragueans  abhor. 

December  28 — To-day  my  luggage  arrived  from  Tad- 
jm-ra.  The  King  wished  to  possess  many  of  the  things; 
and  several  priests  having  heard  that  my  books  had 
arrived,  came  to  me,  bringing  yni\i  them  iEthiopic 
books,  which  they  wished  to  change  for  iEthiopic  New 

December  29 — Many  people  came  to-day,  begging 
for  books  and  medicine.  I  sent  a  copy  of  the  New 
Testament  to  the  Governor  of  Gurague,  whose  name  is 
Nef  homus.  To-day,  the  general  Alaca  of  Shoa,  whose 
name  is  Guebra,  was  dismissed  as  he  had  written  a  bad 
amulet  against  the  King.  I  read  in  the  Gospel  with  a 
number  of  boys.  In  an  iEthiopic  book,  which  a  Deb- 
tera  brought  to  mc  in  order  to  change  it,  was  wi-itten, 
"  Whoever  shall  sell  this  book,  is  cursed  for  ever."  On 
this  account  people  will  not  sell  their  books,  but  change 
them  for  others,  or  lend  the  book  to  make  a  copy. 

December  30 — A  priest  from  the  lake  Haik,  in  the 
tribe  of  the  Wollo   Gallas,  called  upon  me.     He   said, 

18.2  DEMAND    FOR   BOOKS. 

that  there  was  a  Church,  called  St.  Stephanos,  which 
was  built  1300  years  ago.  I  gave  him  a  copy  of  the 
New  Testament,  and  sent  another  for  the  Chui-ch. 
I  spoke  again  with  the  King  about  my  journey  to 
Gm-ague ;  but  he  would  not  allow  me  to  go,  saying, 
that  if  I  should  be  killed,  my  countiymen  would  make 
him  responsible. 

January  1,  1840 — A  new  year.  May  it  be  a  year 
of  gi-ace  to  my  heart,  as  well  as  to  the  whole  of  Abys- 
sinia! "\^Tiile  I  was  reflecting  upon  the  past  year, 
pouring  out  my  heart  in  confessing  my  sins,  and  thank- 
ing the  Lord  for  all  the  spiritual  and  temporal  gifts 
which  He  had  bestowed  upon  me,  the  King's  boy  came, 
delivering  to  me  250  dollars  which  Ali  Arab  had 
brought.  I  again  gave  thanks  to  God,  who  knows  the 
wants  of  His  people.  People  are  continually  coming 
and  asking  for  books.  Would  that  I  had  a  large 
quantity ! 

January  6 — To-day  I  went  to  the  King,  begging 
him  to  change  the  money  which  I  had  received,  a  great 
part  of  it  not  passing  in  this  country.  He  comphed 
wdth  my  request.  Other  people  of  Gurague  came 
asking  for  books.  I  spoke  with  them  a  good  while 
about  John  iii. ;  and  then  gave  them  what  they  had 
asked  for.  The  Guragueans  are  great  beggars.  They 
fall  down  at  my  feet,  begging  only  for  a  piece  of 
salt.  If  they  go  to  Shoa,  they  appear  nearly  naked, 
sapng,  that  the  Gallas  robbed  them  on  the  way; 
and  then  they  get  clothes  from  the  King,  which  the 


Gallas  will  not  rob,  knowing  that  the  King  would  be- 
come angry  with  them. 

January  10 — The  King  departed  for  Angollala. 
This  morning,  the  Lebashi  was  with  me,  begging  for 
medicine.  The  duty  of  this  man  is  to  go  over  the 
whole  country,  and  to  take  all  people  who  are  sus- 
pected of  robbery.  He  appears  to  be  a  man  of  energy. 
Wolda  Haimot,  the  son  of  Alaca  Serat,  then  came 
asking  me  about  Mahomed  and  his  religion.  I  said, 
that  jMahomed  could  not  have  been  sent  by  God,  as  he 
taught  doctrines  quite  contrary  to  the  Old  and  New 
Testaments ;  and  that  if  he  is  called  a  messenger,  he  is 
the  messenger  of  the  antichrist,  yea,  he  is  himself, 
because  St.  John  said,  that  whosoever  denies  the  Son,  is 
the  antichrist,  and  this  is  the  messenger  and  servant  of 
Satan.  I  then  explained  to  him  the  principal  doctrines  of 
Mahomed  and  Christ,  and  encouraged  him  to  read  the 
Word  of  God,  not  only  to  get  knowledge,  but  particu- 
larly to  the  salvation  of  his  soul. 

In  the  evening  the  priests  went  out  to  prepare  the 
ceremonies  of  the  annual  festival  of  baptism.  I  also 
went  out  to  witness  them.  The  Tabots  (holy  ark)  of 
the  five  Chm-ches  of  Ankobar  were  placed  on  a  free 
place  of  the  town,  called  Arada,  where  the  Governor 
.of  the  town  received  them,  prostrating  himself  with 
the  people.  The  priests  were  well  clothed,  as  well  as 
the  other  people,  because  they  consider  the  day  of  bap- 
tism as  a  day  of  great  shelemat  (splendour).  The 
Churches  distribute  white  clothes,  and  the  other  people 


borrow  one  from  the  other  what  they  can  get,  to  gUtter 
on  this  day.  Then  they  went  singing  to  the  ri\'ulet 
Airara,  at  the  foot  of  the  Tshaka  mountain.  Having 
arrived  there,  the  priests  of  each  Church  pitched  a 
tent,  singing  the  whole  night.  I  returned,  but  intended 
to  go  at  night  to  see  the  holy  ceremony. 

January  12,  1840 — After  midnight  I  went  to  the 
rivulet  Airara.  The  ceremony  of  baptism  had  not  com- 
menced ;  but  after  the  first  cro^\ang  of  the  cock  it  began. 
The  priests  of  the  Church  St.  Mary  had  to  officiate  this 
year.  They  had  dammed  the  rivulet  in  the  evening,  so 
that  in  the  morning  it  was  considerably  swollen.  A 
priest  stood  in  the  midst  of  the  water,  and  with  a  few 
words,  blessed  it.  Then  all  the  people,  old  and  young, 
being  quite  naked,  plunged  themselves  into  the  water. 
They  tumbled  first  a  good  while  in  the  water  ;  then  they 
went  out,  and  others  followed  them,  being  like  men 
quite  out  of  their  senses.  Parents  took  their  little 
childi-en  and  cast  them  into  the  water,  though  these 
poor  creatm'es  cried  loud  from  the  coldness  of  the 
water.  The  priests  having  lights  stood  around  the  ri- 
^n.llet,  to  witness  this  abominable  ceremony.  I  tm-ned 
my  eyes  from  this  spectacle,  and  entered  into  a  discourse 
with  the  father  of  Guebra,  speaking  about  the  baptism 
with  the  Holy  Ghost,  and  the  blood  of  Christ  to  the 
forgiveness  of  sin.  Several  priests  joined  in  the  dis- 
coiu-se.  I  then  expressed  my  grief  at  seeing  such  cere- 
monies in  a  Christian  country.  Many  people  told  me 
that  I  had  said  right.     I  then  went  home,   while   the 


priests  remained  till  morning,   when  they  returned  to 
Ankobar,  singing  and  shouting. 

January  13 — A  priest  came  from  Debra  Libanos, 
begging  in  the  name  of  his  priesthood  for  the  ^Ethiopic 
Gospels,  as  their  Church  was  too  poor  to  buy  them.  I 
complied  ^-ith  his  request,  and  gave  him  also  a  copy  of 
the  Amharic  New  Testament.  He  went  away,  retiu-n- 
ing  me  many  thanks.  A  Guraguean  priest  then  came, 
begging  for  the  names  of  the  Amharic  alphabet,  so  that 
he  might  teach  it  in  his  coimtry.  Afterward,  a  Debtera 
brought  to  me  a  book,  called  Tarik.  It  contains  a 
table  of  genealogy  to  King  Solomon ;  and  then 
speaks  about  the  Kings  of  ^Ethiopia,  about  the  origin 
of  the  Gallas,  and  some  facts  respecting  Mahomed 
Gragne,  King  of  Adel.  I  begged  him  to  make  me  a  copy 
of  this  book,  which  he  did.  Aftein\'ard,  Tseddoo  brought 
to  me  a  book,  called  Genset.  He  said  that  it  was 
composed  by  Athanasius.  Tseddoo  said,  that  this 
great  father  of  the  Church  had  maintained,  that  the 
dead  went  to  the  holy  suj)per  after  death.  I  said,  that 
this  was  not  agreeable  to  1  Cor.  xi.,  where  St.  Paul 
says,  that  we  should  show  forth  Christ's  death  till  he 
come ;  nor  to  ]\Iat.  xxvi.  29.,  which  referred  to  a  hea- 
venly communion  of  Christ  mth  His  disciples  as  there 
said,  that  he  would  have  no  further  bodily  commu- 
nion with  them,  but  in  the  kingdom  of  heaven.  Then 
I  reminded  him  of  Gal.  i.  12.,  and  Rev.  xxii.  19.,  where 
it  is  inculcated  on  every  Christian  to  take  nothing  from 
Scripture  nor  add  thereto. 


January  15^  1840 — A  Debtera  brought  to  me  a  book, 
called  Wudassie-Amlak,  which  is  so  much  esteemed 
by  the  Abyssinians,  that  they  say,  if  there  were  no 
priest  with  a  dying  man,  and  this  book  only  were  read, 
his  assistance  would  not  be  reqxiired.  Afterward  I 
studied  the  Galla  language.  My  Galla  told  me  about 
two  Deities  which  the  Gallas  worship.  One  is  called 
Oglia ;  the  other  Atete.  They  offer  sacrifices  to  the 
Atete,  a  female  Deity,  in  the  month  of  September ;  and 
to  the  Oglia,  a  male  Deity,  in  the  months  of  January 
and  April. 

January  16 — I  called  upon  Anko  Jasus,  the  Alaca 
of  the  Church  of  St.  Mary.  He  appears  to  be  a  monk, 
I  gave  him  a  copy  of  the  ^thiopic  Gospels,  and  a  copy 
of  the  Amharic  New  Testament  for  his  Church.  Thus 
all  the  Churches  of  Ankobar  have  received  books  from 

January  17 — Debtera  Worknech  begged  me  to 
explain  to  him  Matt.  iii.  I  spoke  about  the  baptism  of 
John,  and  that  of  the  Abyssinians,  which  I  had  lately 
witnessed.  First,  I  said,  that  John  taught  his  people 
before  he  baptized  them,  and  that  he  showed  them  the 
necessity  of  repentance,  if  they  wished  to  enter  into 
the  kingdom  of  God ;  and,  secondly,  that  John  directed 
his  hearers  to  the  great  day,  the  judgment  of  Christ ; 
that  they  should  not  rely  upon  their  own  righteousness 
and  useless  ceremonies,  but  really  change  their  minds, 
and  be  baptized  with  the  Holy  Ghost. 





January  22,  1840 — This  morning,  about  nine  o'clock, 
the  King  departed  from  Angollala  on  an  expedition 
against  the  Galla  Tribes  in  the  south  of  Shoa,  and  I 
was  ordered  to  follow  him  in  company  with  M.  Rochet. 
About  ten  o'clock  we  passed  the  river  Tshatsha,  which 
has  its  course  from  south-east  to  north-west :  it  most 
probably  arises  in  the  mountains  of  Bulga  and  Mentshar, 
in  the  province  of  Fatagar.  On  a  neighbouring  hill 
we  observed  a  large  village,  called  Wonabadera,  where 
Ayto  Maretsh,  the  most  influential  Chieftain  of  the 
Gallas  in  the  south  of  Shoa,  has  his  residence.  The 
Galla  tribe,  through  the   territoiy  of  which    wc  first 

188  THE  king's  army. 

passed,  is  called  Abedtslioo,  which  is  veiy  large,  and 
di\ided  into  several  districts.  It  is  well  peopled  and 
cultivated ;  but  being  destitute  of  trees,  it  does  not  pre- 
sent to  the  eye  so  beautiful  an  aspect  as  the  other  terri- 
tories of  the  Gallas,  which  we  saw  afterward.  It  has 
no  high  mountains,  but  only  hills.  It  is  rich  in  rivulets, 
meadows,  and  large  valleys. 

The  army  of  the  King  which  accompanied  him  to- 
day amounted  to  about  5000  men.  The  King  went 
before,  having  on  each  side  a  man  holding  a  large  red 
umbrella,  preceded  by  several  Gallas  to  show  him 
the  way.  Behind  the  King  there  were  about  twenty 
wives  riding,  to  prepare  the  King's  kitchen,  and  at 
a  little  distance  were  the  priests,  alacas,  and  other  men 
of  rank.  I  was  ordered  to  go  \\-ith  these.  And 
finally  there  were  the  soldiers  of  the  King,  commanded 
by  their  respective  officers.  On  the  left  side  of  the 
army,  were  the  Tambom-s,  riding  on  mules,  making 
their  monotonous  noise;  and,  on  the  right  side, 
were  several  wives,  singing  hymns  in  praise  of  the 

As  my  European  di-ess  and  physiognomy  excited  the 
attention  of  the  people,  I  was  always  surrounded  by 
them,  asking  me  about  my  country.  I  left  this  matter, 
and  took  the  opportunity  of  speaking  to  them  about 
the  way  conducting  to  their  eternal  welfare.  As  a  Mis- 
sionary has  people  with  him  from  all  parts  of  Shoa,  he 
can  do  much  on  such  expeditions.  Every  word  he 
speaks,  they  relate  afterward  to  others,  as  I  frequently 


observed.     A  priest,  who  was  with  Ayto  Maretsh,  asked 
me  a  number  of  questions.     I   at  first  considered  him 
a  bigoted  monk,  and  spoke  ^xiih.  him  in  decided  terms  ; 
but  I  observed  afterward  that  he  was  much  attached  to 
me.     He  at  fii'st  tm-ned  the  conversation  to  fasting.     I 
said,  "  Fasting  may  be  useful  to  you,  as  well  as  disad- 
vantageous, according  to  the  use  you  make  of  it.     If 
by  fasting  you  wish  to  be  justified  before  God,   you  are 
not  in  want  of  the  merit  of  Jesus  Christ,  and  of  the 
gi-ace  and  mercy  God  has  ofiiered  us  in  Him  ;  you  make 
youi-  own  Sadour,  and  blaspheme  Him  who  accepts  a 
mourning  sinner  by  His  grace ;  and  you  declare  all  that 
Christ  has  done  for  us  to  be  superfluous,   or  at  least, 
not  sufficient  for  our  redemption.     But  in  doing  so, 
you  are  quite  in  opposition  to  the  doctrine  of  Christ 
and  His  Apostles,  who   declare  that  there  is  no  salva- 
tion   but    in  the  name  of   Christ,  who   justifies  the 
sinner  by  faith,  and  not  by  merit  which  a  man  thinks 
to   have   got    by   fasting    or  other    work.       In   this 
respect,   fasting  is  an  immense  disadvantage   to  you ; 
yea,  you  commit  a  great  sin  if  you  fast  for  righteous- 
ness' sake.     You  have    no  command  in  Scripture   for 
your  doing  so ;  but  you   are  commanded  to  put  aside 
all  youi-  o\\Ti  works  and  to  seize  by  a  living  faith  what 
is  given  to  you  on  the  cross  of  your  perfect  Saviour  Jesus 
Christ.'^     I  then  explained  to  him  the  passage  (Matt. 
V.  3.)  Blessed  are  the  poor  in  spirit :  for  theirs  is  the 
kingdom  of  heaven.     Furthermore,   I  said,    "Fasting 
respects  only  the  flesh,  not  the  soul.     The  Mahome- 


dans  and  heathens  can  fast  as  severely  as  you,  without 
partaking  of  Christ.  It  is  another  thing,  if  we  fast 
in  order  to  be  able  to  meditate  about  the  condition  of 
our  hearts,  to  mourn  over  our  sins,  and  to  pray.  In  this 
respect,  fasting  may  become  useful  to  us ;  but  in  doing 
so  we  know  and  declare  it  before  God  and  men,  that 
we  do  not  seek  righteousness  thereby,  but  only  a  pre- 
paration for  a  praying  intercourse  with  our  God.  Having 
this  in  view,  the  Apostles  sometimes  fasted ;  but  they 
left  it  to  Christian  liberty  as  to  how  often  and  in 
in  what  cases  it  should  be  done,  without  giving  strict 
orders  about  it." 

Afterward  he  spoke  about  the  prohibition  of  coffee 
drinking.  The  priests  of  Shoa  do  not  allow  it,  in  oppo- 
sition to  the  Mahomedans,  who  like  coffee  so  much. 
First,  I  proved  to  him,  that  God  makes  coffee  grow  as 
Avell  as  other  things  for  the  use  of  men ;  and  therefore 
he  who  forbids  it,  is  in  opposition  to  the  Creator  of 
all  things.  Secondly,  I  showed  him  that  all  that  God 
has  created,  is  clean,  good,  and  not  to  be  refused,  if  it 
be  received  with  thanksgiving,  as  St.  Paul  says,  (1  Tim. 
iv.  3,  4.)  ;  and  that  it  was  another  thing  if  some  things 
were  not  suitable  to  our  bodies  and  health.  In  this 
respect,  we  were  obliged  to  abstain  from  eating  or  drink- 
ing it,  as  it  is  our  duty  to  preserve  our  life,  which  we 
should  otherwise  destroy,  as  many  Abyssinians  do  by 
severe  fasting.  Thirdly,  I  explained  to  him  the  differ- 
ence by  which  we  are  distinguished  from  the  Mahome- 
dans, namely,  not  by  fasting,  or  coffee  di-inking,  or 


di'ess,  or  bands  of  silk  ;  but  by  oiu*  doctrines  and  a  holy 
Christian  life.  Fourthly,  that  if  the  Abyssinians  will 
separate  themselves  from  Mahomedans  by  prohibiting 
coffee,  they  are  obliged  to  abstain  from  all  other  meat 
which  the  Mahomedans  make  use  of.  Fifthly,  I  re- 
proached their  priests,  saying,  "  I  know  why  you  are  so 
strict  in  forbidding  coffee ;  you  do  it  for  your  interest, 
taking  a  cloth,  or  some  pieces  of  salt,  before  you  ab- 
solve a  dead  man  whom  you  know  to  have  been  a  coffee 
drinker.  I  would  not  have  opposed  you  so  much,  if  I 
had  observed  that  there  was  no  custom  in  general  to 
di'ink  coffee ;  but  knowing  the  reasons  why  you  forbid 
it,  I  thought  it  my  duty  to  speak  openly  on  this  point. 
But  supposing  there  were  no  custom,  your  country  could 
produce  plenty  of  coffee,  and  it  would  be  for  yom-  tempo- 
ral welfare  to  plant  and  sell  it  to  foreign  countries.^^ 

I  then  spoke  about  the  real  conversion  of  sinners, 
about  the  happiness  of  a  true  believer  in  Christ,  and  the 
duty  of  the  Shoa  Christians  to  convert  the  J\Iahomcdans 
and  Gallas,  saying,  that  if  they  loved  Christ,  they  would 
keep  His  commandment,  by  which  all  true  believers  are 
obligated  to  instruct  all  the  nations  of  the  earth.  But 
in  order  to  be  able  to  do  so,  they  must  first  themselves 
retm-n  to  the  pure  doctrines  of  the  Gospel,  else  the 
Gallas  would  not  hear  them.  "  What,"  I  said,  "  shall  the 
Gallas  gain  by  your  doctrines  about  fasting,  prohibition 
of  coffee  and  smoking,  by  your  traditions  of  circumcision, 
and  by  yom'  strict  separation  from  other  nations  ?  In- 
stead of  converting  them,  you  give  them  occasion   to 


blaspheme  the  holy  name  of  Christ,  thinking  that  His 
yoke  is  a  very  heavy  one,  in  opposition  to  what  He  him- 
self says  (Matt.  xi.  28.)  Come  unto  me,  all  ye  that  la- 
hour  and  are  heavy  laden,  and  I  will  give  you  rest,  8(c." 
In  my  heart  I  fervently  prayed  that  the  Lord  would 
open  a  door  to  the  Galla  nation,  and  hasten  the  time  of 
their  salvation. 

About  one  o'clock  we  passed  a  river,  called  Belat, 
which  has  its  coiu'se  in  the  same  direction  as  the 
Tshatsha,  and  perhaps  the  same  source,  on  the  Bulga 
mountains.  There  is  a  large  village  of  the  same  name 
near  it,  situated  on  a  rocky  hill.  Oiu*  route  was  plain 
and  agreeable.  "VVe  observed  several  large  ahorn-trees, 
under  which  the  Gallas  perform  their  religious  ceremo- 
nies. These  trees  therefore  are  considered  holy,  and 
nobody  can  touch  them  without  losing  his  life.  Here 
they  offer  sacrifices  to  their  two  principal  Deities,  Oglia 
and  Atete.  To  the  Oglia,  which  is  a  male  Deity,  they 
offer  cows,  sheep,  &c.,  in  the  months  of  January  and 
April ;  and  to  the  other,  which  is  a  female  Deity,  they 
offer  sacrifices  in  the  month  of  September,  at  which 
time  their  priests,  called  Kallitshotsh,  foretell  the  inci- 
dents of  the  coming  year.  They  pray  that  these  beings, 
which  they  think  to  be  invisible,  may  grant  to  the  peo- 
ple a  good  harvest  and  other  temporal  blessings. 

About  two  o'clock  in  the  afternoon  we  encamped  on 
a  large  plain,  called  Magel,  which  is  intersected  by 
a  rivulet  of  the  same  name.  The  King  gave  orders 
to  Serta  "Wold  to  furnish  me  with  a  tent. 

VISIT    TO    A    GALLA    VILLAGE.  193 

January  23,1840 — Yeiy  early  this  morning  I  went 
out  to  a  neighbouring  village  of  Gallas,  accompanied  by 
M.  Rochet  and  my  Galla  boy.  The  Gallas  on  seeing  us, 
ran  all  together.  I  saluted  them  in  their  own  language. 
I  then  said  to  them,  through  my  Galla,  that  I  had  heard 
in  my  country  that  the  Gallas  were  like  what  the  fore- 
fathers of  my  country  had  been  formerly,  not  knowing 
the  right  way  to  their  temporal  and  eternal  welfare  ; 
that  the  Wake  (God)  had  shown  us  the  right  way  in  a 
book  which  we  call  the  Gospel ;  and  that  His  will  was, 
that  all  men  should  hear,  know,  and  accept  this  book, 
in  order  to  become  happy  with  Him  after  this  life.  As 
to  myself,  I  intended  to  study  well  their  language,  and 
then  to  come  and  teach  their  boys  and  all  who  wished 
to  know  the  right  way.  Several  people  said,  "  Well, 
come,  and  we  will  give  you  sheep  and  what  yovi  need." 
I  replied,  "  I  am  not  in  want  of  property  ;  but  I  wish 
to  make  you  happy  by  the  knowledge  of  the  Word  of 
God."  I  Hke  much  the  Galla  people,  and  1  am  con- 
vinced that  if  a  ]\Iissionaiy  once  commenced  his  labours 
among  them,  he  would  be  blessed  with  better  success 
than  among  the  Abyssinian  people. 

The  King  set  out  about  eight  o'clock  with  his  troops, 
which  had  been  considerably  increased  by  soldiers 
coming  from  Bulga  and  Alentshar.  We  marched  south- 
west-west in  the  territorj^  of  the  Abedtshoo  Gallas. 
About  eleven  o'clock,  we  passed  the  river  Sana  Robi, 
which  separates  the  tribe  Abedtshoo  from  the  tribe 
Gelan ;  and  then  marched  north-west,  passing,  about  one 


194j      governor  of  machfood. 

o'clock  in  the  afternooiij  the  river  Sanga  Boka.  About 
two  o'clock,  we  encamped  on  a  place,  called  Gordoma, 
in  the  tribe  Woberi.  As  the  tribes  Woberi  and  Gelan 
were  several  years  at  war  with  each  other,  the  country 
around  was  a  desert,  and  we  saw  nothing  but  the  ruins 
of  former  villages.  ^Tien  we  had  encamped,  the 
King  asked  me  how  many  soldiers  I  thought  he  had 
gathered  at  present  ?  I  said,  that  I  thought  there 
were  about  six  or  seven  thousand.  He  laughed,  and 
said,  "  That  is  nothing :  look  after  several  days,  and 
then  tell  me  the  number."  We  had  to  the  north  the 
province  of  Slioa  Meda,  where  there  are  Christians. 

In  the  evening,  the  Governor  of  Machfood  came  to 
see  me  in  my  tent.  As  they  came  only  to  see  my  Euro- 
pean dress,  and  to  ask  about  trilling  things,  I  turned  the 
discourse  to  the  Word  of  God,  to  proclaim  which  I 
was  sent  by  the  Christians  of  my  country.  They  then 
kept  silence,  in  order  to  hear  what  1  had  to  say  about 
the  propagation  of  the  Gospel  in  our  times,  and  of  the 
Holy  Scriptures  in  a  hundred  and  seventy  different  lan- 
guages, and  about  the  arts  of  our  country.  I  like  to 
converse  with  different  people  on  this  expedition,  and 
to  make  known  my  object  in  all  the  districts  of  Shoa, 
as  I  obtain  thereby  a  great  advantage ;  namely,  that  I 
am  known  if  I  should  afterward  visit  their  villages. 
I  regretted  that  I  had  not  with  me  a  large  quantity  of 
Amharic  books,  as  I  had  many  opportunities  of  dis- 
tributing them. 

January  24, 1840 — As  the  King  set  out  very  late  this 


morning,  I  had  a  long  conversation  with  people  who 
smTOunded  my  tent,  in  number  about  two  hundred. 
My  heart  was  warm  at  seeing  them.  Several  were  about 
to  speak  about  fasting ;  but  I  left  that,  and  enlarged  on 
the  duty  of  a  Christian  to  acquaint  himself  well  with 
the  "Word  of  God,  contained  in  the  Old  and  New  Testa- 
ments, and  to  follow  it  with  all  his  heart  during  his 
life.  I  then  proved  to  them  from  the  Ten  Command- 
ments the  sinfulness  of  theii-  hearts,  and  the  necessity 
of  a  h\-ing  faith  in  Jesus  Christ.  The  people  were 
much  pleased  with  what  I  said,  saying,  that  they  had 
never  heard  such  good  tidings  from  their  priests.  If 
I  should  accompany  the  King  on  another  expedition, 
I  shall  prepare  before  a  number  of  short  sermons, 
explaining  to  tlie  people  the  essential  truths  of  Scrip- 
ture in  a  clear  and  decided  manner.  These  expeditions, 
which  the  King  makes  three  times  in  the  year,  namely, 
January,  June,  and  September,  afford  a  suitable  occa- 
sion for  a  ^Missionary  to  preach  the  Gospel,  which 
opportunity  he  does  not  have  at  other  times. 

We  marched  through  the  territory  Woberi  south- 
west-west. On  the  south-east  we  left  the  mountains  of 
Garra  Gorphoa,  which  extend  from  east  to  north-west, 
in  which  direction  we  saw  all  the  rivulets  running, 
which  we  were  continually  passing.  As  since  yesterday 
the  troops  from  northern  and  western  Shoa  arrived, 
the  King  sent  his  boy  Bern,  to  request  me  to  go  on  a 
hill  from  whence  I  could  see  the  troops  passing,  and 
to  tell  the  King  how  many  I  thought  there  were.  1 
K  2 

196  A   GALLA    GRAVE. 

rested  about  an  hour,  seeing  the  people  arriving  from 
all  directions ;  finally,  I  went  my  way,  thinking  there 
were  about  iifteen  thousand  men.  Notwithstanding 
this,  others  will  arrive  in  a  few  days  from  Shoa,  and 
the  country  of  the  Gallas.  The  most  beautiful  horses 
and  mules  were  to  be  seen.  How  powerful  a  King 
Sahela  Selassieh  might  become,  if  his  troops  were  dis- 
ciplined, and  his  country  civilized  !  About  one  o'clock, 
we  were  covered  by  an  immense  swarm  of  locusts,  so 
that  we  could  see  neither  the  sun  nor  the  mountains 
around.  I  have  seen  them  in  Tigre,  but  not  in  such 
a  mass.  Afterward  we  had  rain.  The  second  rainy 
season,  which  is  called  Tshernat,  is  at  hand,  and  is  ex- 
pected regularly  between  January  and  February.  The 
first  rainy  season,  called  Hat  Kidan,  begins  in  the 
month  of  June,  and  ends  in  September. 

I  saw  this  afternoon,  for  the  first  time,  a  Galla  grave 
in  a  village  called  Mutshella.  The  grave  was  sm*- 
rounded  by  a  wall  about  three  feet  in  height,  on  which 
the  aloe-plant  was  growing  up  very  beautifully.  The 
grave  was  also  covered  with  stones  of  about  two  feet  in 
height.  I  have  never  seen  in  Abyssinia  a  grave  adorned 
so  nicely.  On  asking  my  Galla  boy,  why  they  adorned 
their  graves  so  beautifully,  I  received  an  answer  which 
destroyed  my  pleasure.  He  told  me,  that  the  Gallas 
are  of  opinion,  that  as  soon  as  the  above  mentioned 
plant  grows  on  the  grave  of  a  person,  he  begins  to  get 
righteousness  before  the  Wake,  and  goes  to  him.  How- 
ever, the  Gallas  have  an  idea  of  retribution,  as  they 

PLAIN    OF   SULULTA.  197 

believe  that  a  good  man  goes  to  the  Wake,  and  a  bad 
one  to  the  fire  of  the  Setanat,  or  Geni.  As  I  asked 
Gallas,  who  have  no  connexion  with  the  people  of 
Shoa,  I  suppose  that  this  is  an  idea  of  theii-  own. 

January  25,  1840 — We  commenced  our  march  this 
morning  about  nine  o'clock,  proceeding  south-south- 
west, through  the  territory  of  the  tribe  Jumbitshoo, 
which  was  quite  destitute  of  villages.  We  passed  several 
rivTilets.  The  King  rested  several  times  to  catch  fishes. 
About  two  o'clock,  we  encamped  in  a  plain  called 
Sululta,  having  been  about  eight  hours  in  its  circuit. 
The  Gallas  on  the  neighbouring  mountains  are  called 
Sululta  Gallas.  Their  neighbours  in  the  south-east 
are  called  Finfini  Gallas,  from  the  high  mountains  of 
the  same  denomination.  The  plain  of  Sululta  is  ex- 
ceedingly rich  in  grass  and  water ;  but  there  is  no 
wood.  I  observed  here,  as  in  other  places,  that  the 
Gallas  leave  the  plains  to  their  horses,  sheep,  cows, 
&c.,  which  they  love  like  their  children ;  while  they 
themselves  seek  their  maintenance  by  cultivating  the 
mountains.  In  doing  so  they  are  able  to  bring  up  a 
better  cavalry  than  perhaps  any  other  nation.  As  the 
Gallas  of  Sululta  did  not  pay  their  tribute  in  horses 
and  cows,  the  King  gave  orders  for  all  their  villages 
to  be  destroyed  by  fire.  I  did  not  care  much  to  know 
the  names  of  the  Galla  villages,  as  they  are  destroyed 
almost  on  every  expedition.  The  soldiers  take  all 
they  can  get  in  the  houses,  and  then  burn  them.  As 
the  harvest  was  over,  the  King  could  not,  as  he   gene- 


rally  does,  burn  the  fruits ;  but  much  wheat  was  de- 
stroyed with  the  houses.  The  Gallas  are  foohshj  I 
have  no  doubt,  because  they  could  prevent  the  King 
from  burning  their  houses,  as  the  tribute  which  he 
requires  from  them  is  very  little, 

January  26,1840— This  morning,  about  eight  o'clock, 
we  left  Sululta.  On  our  departure  the  King  bm-nt  all 
the  meadows  on  which  we  had  encamped.  About  nine 
o'clock  we  entered  into  the  territory  of  Mulofalada, 
governed  by  the  queen  Tshamieh,  whom  I  have  men- 
tioned before.  She  has  her  residence  at  Wollenso,  a 
large  village,  which  is  considered  the  capital  place  of 
her  tribe.  Having  passed  through  several  territories 
of  the  Gallas  quite  destitute  of  trees,  and  but  little 
cultivated,  it  was  very  refreshing  to  my  eyes  to  see 
large  forests  and  the  ground  cultivated.  The  King  of 
Shoa  married  the  daughter  of  the  queen  ;  and  her  son, 
whose  name  is  Tshara,  is  much  attached  to  the  King, 
and  rendered  him  great  services  on  the  expedition. 
Considering  that  this  tribe  is  in  the  midst  of  Gallas 
dwelling  between  the  Hawash  in  the  south,  and 
Shoa  in  the  north  and  east — that  it  is  near  the  Nile,  and 
Godtsham  on  the  west— that  it  is  very  fertile,  and 
well  cultivated— and  that  it  is  in  total  dependance  upon 
the  King  of  Shoa,  I  could  not  but  think  that  it  was  a 
fit  place  to  establish  a  Galla  Mission  among  this  tribe. 
I  therefore  determined  to  make  my  personal  acquaint- 
ance with  the  son  of  the  Queen,  and  to  acquaint 
him  with  my  object.     On  our  way,  the  King  received 


several  Chieftains,  who  delivered  up  their  tributes. 
Generally  speaking,  what  the  Gallas  call  dependancy 
upon  Shoa  is  very  little  with  the  southern  Gallas,  as 
they  are  afraid  of  the  King  only  so  long  as  he  is  in 
their  territory.  The  tribe  of  Mulofalada,  however, 
seems  to  me  to  be  an  exception. 

I  must  make  some  remarks  respecting  the  behaviour 
of  the  King  when  he  is  marching.  He  is  as  active  in 
the  field  as  at  home.  Sitting  on  his  mule,  he  speaks 
with  his  officers  and  other  persons,  and  receives  the 
Governors  arriving  from  Shoa  or  the  Galla  tribes,  who, 
on  seeing  the  King,  fall  down  on  their  faces,  as  well  as 
their  troops.  He  asks  in  a  friendly  way.  How  do  you 
do  ?  after  which  the  chieftain  comes  near,  walks  by 
the  side  of  the  King's  mule,  and  speaks  with  him 
apart  for  about  half  an  hour.  The  King  having  rode 
on  his  mule  for  a  considerable  time,  descends  and  walks 
on  foot  like  his  people.  He  speaks  the  Galla  language 
pretty  well.  When  he  intends  to  encamp,  he  goes 
apart  on  a  hill  with  a  select  number  of  troops  to 
reconnoitre,  till  his  tents  are  put  up.  Indeed,  he  is  a 
respectable  prince,  and  has  intelligence  and  experience. 

In  the  afternoon,  we  passed  several  rivulets  in  the 
territoiy  of  Mulofalada.  One  of  them  is  called 
Koieta,  and  another  Dekame  :  both  seem  to  have  their 
course  to  the  Nile.  All  the  rivulets  which  we  passed, 
have  water  the  whole  year,  I  was  informed.  At  two 
o'clock,  we  arrived  in  the  ten-itory  of  the  tribe  Ada- 
berga,  which    is    partially   dependent   on  Mulofalada. 


Adaberga  has  its  name  from  the  high  mountains 
situated  in  this  tribe^  as  many  other  tribes  are  called 
by  the  name  of  their  mountains.  I  several  times  ob- 
served, that  the  extension  of  a  tribe  is  limited  by  a 
chain  of  mountains ;  as  you  enter  into  another  tribe 
as  soon  as  you  ascend  another  chain  of  mountains. 
The  Adaberga  mountains  have  their  direction  from 
south-south-east  to  north  -east.  The  territory  of  this 
tribe  is  very  rich  in  forests,  water,  and  meadows.  As 
they  refused  to  pay  the  tribute,  their  houses  were 
burnt.  About  three  o'clock  we  encamped  in  a  valley, 
called  Belatsha,  from  the  rivulet"  of  the  same  name. 

January  27,  1840 — This  morning  I  had  a  long  con- 
versation with  people  from  the  North  of  Shoa,  from 
Geshe,  Anzokia,  and  Efrata.  I  read  to  them  several 
Psalms  with  short  explanations.  They  were  much  pleased 
to  hear  the  Word  of  God  in  Amharic.  I  am  firmly 
convinced  that  the  Abyssinian  people  would  not  refuse 
a  reformation,  if  there  were  some  enlightened  teachers 
among  themselves,  brought  up  with  a  sovmd  know- 
ledge of  the  Bible,  and  anointed  by  the  Holy  Spirit. 
But  I  have  little  hope  in  this  respect,  though  they  like 
to  hear  a  discourse  about  the  Word  of  God.  In  all  my 
conversations  I  endeavour  to  show  them  the  necessity 
of  relying  only  on  the  Bible,  it  being  quite  suffi- 
cient to  the  knowledge  of  our  salvation.  I  show  them 
always  that  there  are  two  seducing  ways ;  either  that 
we  add  something  to  the  Scriptures,  or  that  we  take 
away  from  them  ;   explaining  the  danger  of  these  ways. 

CLIMATE    OF    METTA.  201 

with  the  example  of  Adam  and  Eve  and  other  instances, 
as  well  as  from  the  history  of  the  Chm-cli. 

We  commenced  our  march  about  nine  o'clock  this 
morning.  Having  passed  through  a  large  forest, 
north-west,  we  descended  into  a  large  plain,  called  Ada- 
berga  Tshamer,  in  which  the  Gallas  themselves  had 
bm-nt  all  the  grass  to  prevent  the  King  from  encamp- 
ing there.  A  Galla  was  caught  in  the  forest :  three 
others  were  killed  this  day  by  the  people  of  Tshara. 
All  the  villages  around  were  destroyed  by  fire.  My 
boy  brought  to  me  a  lance  of  iron,  which  the  Gallas  of 
this  country  used  to  wear.  About  three  o'clock,  we  en- 
camped near  a  river  called  Robi,  having  its  course  to 
the  Nile.  We  were  in  the  territory  of  the  Metta 
Gallas.  Metta  is  divided  into  several  districts.  From 
the  river  Robi,  the  Gallas  around  are  called  jNIetta  Robi 
Gallas.  They  did  not  deliver  up  their  tribute,  and  had 
taken  flight  to  their  moimtains.  The  territory  of  ]\Ietta 
is  exceedingly  beautiful,  like  Mulofalada  and  Adabcrga. 
Generally  speaking,  the  farther  we  go  to  the  south,  the 
country  becomes  more  beautiful.  It  is  an  immense  loss 
that  this  fine  country  is  in  the  hands  of  these  people. 
They  have  every  thing  in  abundance,  and  their  climate 
is  like  that  of  Italy.  It  is  so  healthy  that  sickness  is 

January  28 — This    morning   I  had  a  conversation 
with  the  Gallas.     As  on  this  expedition  I  wished  par- 
ticularly to  converse  with  the  people,   I  took  my  Galla 
translation   of  the  Gospel  of  St.  John,  in  order  to  see 
K  5 


whether  tliey  were  able  to  understand  it  or  not ;  and  I 
had  the  pleasure  to  observe  that  they  understood  it 
pretty  well.  I  added  some  explanations  to  what  I  read, 
and  they  expressed  to  me  their  great  satisfaction.  I  am 
convinced  that  the  Gallas  are  not  against  instruction ; 
but  they  hate  the  Amharic  priests,  who  will  instruct 
them  in  an  unknown  language,  and  in  things  which  they 
consider  a  heavy  yoke.  We  always  observed  that  the 
Gallas  made  a  great  distinction  between  me  and  M. 
Rochet  and  the  Amharic  people. 

The  King  encamped  about  one  o^clock  in  a  plain 
called  Darasoo,  on  the  river  Gadisa;  afterward  he 
went  out  with  a  select  number  of  soldiers  in  a  north - 
westei'ly  direction,  to  attack  the  tribe  Wogidi  INIetta. 
I  accompanied  him,  though  he  begged  me  several  times 
to  remain  in  the  camp.  We  marched  about  two  hours, 
till  we  arrived  at  a  high  mountain,  on  which,  when  the 
air  is  clear,  Godtsham  and  the  Nile  can  be  seen.  We 
saw  the  mountains  of  Mughir  to  the  north,  on  the 
foot  of  which  is  the  tribe  Fajah,  where  the  King  went 
on  his  last  expedition,  in  the  month  of  September. 
Between  the  mountains  of  the  \Yogidi  Gallas  and  those 
of  the  ]Metta  Robi  Gallas  is  a  river,  called  Ada,  flomng 
to  the  Hawash.  In  the  west  of  Wogidi  Metta  is  the 
tribe  Betsho  Fugik,  and  in  the  west  of  Betsho  Fugik 
is  the  tribe  Tsharso  Daga  on  the  Nile.  As  the  Gallas 
had  taken  flight,  the  King  returned  to  his  camp,  hav- 
ing first  burnt  their  \illages. 

January  29, 1840 — This  morning, about  nine  o'clock, 


we  left  oiu'  camp,  to  retui'u  to  tlie  tribe  ^Metta  Robi, 
where  we  had  been  two  days  before.  I  asked  several 
Gallas  who  were  with  me  in  my  tent,  what  they  knew 
about  their  progenitor.  They  said,  that,  according  to  an 
old  tradition,  their  progenitor  was  called  "VVolab  ;  that 
he  was  formed  from  mud  by  the  Wake  (god),  and  re- 
ceived afterward  a  living  soul ;  and  that  he  had  his 
first  residence  on  the  Hawash.  I  could  not  learn  more 
from  them.  On  oiu-  rctiu-n,  the  Gallas,  the  houses  of 
whom  were  bm-nt  yesterday,  brought  their  tribute  in 
honey,  horses,  and  cows. 

We  encamped  about  one  o'clock.  I  had  a  long  con- 
versation -^ith  people  from  jNlachfood,  Geshe,  Morad, 
Bulga,  and  ]\Ientshar.  I  observed  that  the  people  of 
Bulga  and  Mentshar  are  the  most  ignorant. 

January  30 — As  the  King  rested  in  his  tent  till 
ten  o'clock,  I  had  much  time  to  speak  ^\dth  the  people. 
I  first  spoke  about  the  power  of  the  priests.  I  proved 
to  them  that  a  priest  is  a  sinner  before  God,  like  other 
men ;  and  that  a  good  priest  does  not  deny  his  sinful- 
ness and  his  want  of  a  Saviour,  as  we  see  in  the  exam- 
ple of  St.  Paul,  who  declared  himself  to  be  the  greatest 
sinner — that  therefore  a  priest  has  no  power  of  his 
own  over  other  men — that  as  he  receives  the  salvation 
of  his  soul  only  by  true  repentance  and  living  faith  in 
Christ,  it  is  his  duty  to  show  to  his  people  the  way  in 
which  he  has  been  saved,  in  conformity  with  the  exam- 
ple of  John  the  Baptist,  and  with  God's  commandment. 
"  Therefore,"  I  remarked,  "  take  care  that  you  do  not 


presume  on  authority  which  the  Lord  has  not  given  you 
—that  you  preach  His  word  and  not  youi-  own — seek 
for  His  honour  and  glory,  and  not  yom-  own  interest. 
You  have  certainly  great  honour  and  power  by  teaching 
His  word ;  but  if  you  take  from  or  add  to  that  word, 
as  now  you  do,  the  Lord  will  call  you  thieves  and  rob- 
bers destrojang  his  sheep.  The  iVpostles  had  the  Holy 
Spirit,  who  conducted  them  into  all  truth,  and  preserved 
them  from  teaching  other  things  which  Christ  had  not 
commanded.  In  His  power  they  bound  the  sinner  who 
did  not  repent,  as  well  as  absolved  him  who  truly  re- 
pented of  his  sins  :  but  you  have  the  spirit  of  the  world, 
and  seek  only  for  worldly  interests,  and  take  the  power 
and  the  word  of  Christ  only  as  the  means  of  obtaining 
your  temporal  objects.  You  keep  the  flock  in  ignorance, 
teaching  them  doctrines  quite  contrary  to  the  Scrip- 
tures ;  and  you  prevent  them  by  your  pretended  autho- 
rity from  receiving  the  happy  and  pure  knowledge  of 
the  Bible.  But  I  tell  you  that  the  liord  wall  require 
from  you,  on  the  Day  of  Judgment,  all  the  souls  which 
are  lost  on  youi-  account.  The  souls  are  not  yours,  but 
Christ's ;  and  if  you  do  not  reveal  to  them  His  will, 
you  are  like  Judas,  who  looked  more  for  money  than 
for  his  master's  interest." 

We  then  spoke  about  slavery.  As  slavery  is  very 
frequent  in  this  country,  I  take  every  opportvmity  to 
prove  its  inconsistency  with  Christian  principles,  namely. 
Thou  shalt  love  thy  neighbour  as  thyself.  And  as  ye 
would  that  men  should  do  to  you,  do  ye   also   to  them 

ON   SLAVERY.  205 

likewise,  "  A^Tiy  do  you/'  I  said,  "  sell  yoiu-  neighbour 
like  a  mule,  or  horse,  or  other  property  ?     Would  you 
like  a  man  to  deal  so  with  you  ?  Furthermore,  you  know 
from  Scriptm-e,  that  all  men  are  brothers,  members  of 
one  family,  coming  of  one  blood,  Adam,  and  redeemed 
by  one  blood,  Jesus  Christ.     It  is  also  said,  Thou  shalt 
not  covet  thy  neighbour's  house,  thou  shalt  not  covet 
thy  neighbours  zvife,  nor  his  man  servant,  nor  his  maid 
servant,  nor  his  ox,  nor  his  ass,  nor  any  thing  that  is 
thy  neighbour's.     How  earnestly  the  Almighty  forbids 
us  in  this  commandment   to  take   the  property  of  our 
neighbour.     A\Tiy  do  you  steal  men,  or  at  least  buy 
and  sell  stolen  men  ?     You  say  that  you  do  not  steal 
men.     Well,  but  you  buy  and  give  occasion  for  others 
to  steal  them.     What  is  the  reason  of  so  many  wars 
among  the  Gallas  ?     Is  it  not  to  make  and  sell  slaves  ? 
You,  the  Christians  of  Shoa,   are  responsible  for  this. 
You  do  not  eat  with  Gallas  and  Mahomedans  ;  but  you 
do  their  sinful  works.     Separate  yourselves  from  their 
sins,  and  prove  that  you  are  disciples  of  Him  who  has 
given  himself  for  their  redemption.      You  forbid  coffee 
and  tobacco,  which  the  Word  of  God  does  not ;  but  you 
favour  a  trade  with  men  to  your  eternal  condemnation." 
Our  conversation  then  turned  to  the  difference  be- 
tween Christians  and  Mahomedans.     I  said,  "  The  dif- 
ference does  not  consist  in  strings  of  silk,   or  in  not 
eating  with  ^lahomedans  ;  but  in   doctrines,  and  in  a 
holy  Christian  life.     Like  the  ]\Iahomedans,  you  seek 
your  righteousness  before  God  by  fasting  and  other 


works ;  like  them  you  are  slave-traders ;  and  yovi  love 
fornication.  Wlierein^  therefore,  do  you  differ  ?  Is  it 
because  you  have  a  greater  number  of  Saints  than  the 
Mahomedans  ?  Or  is  it  that  you  have  better  stories 
and  fables  than  are  found  among  the  Mahomedans  ? 
You  have,  it  is  true,  some  theoretical  knowledge  of 
Christ  j  but  practically,  you  are  like  the  Mahomedans, 
who  not  feeling  the  sinfulness  of  their  hearts,  nor  know- 
ing the  sickness  of  their  souls,  are  offended  at  the  Sa- 
viour's incarnation.  And  you  are  offended  at  our  say- 
ing to  you,  that  fasting  and  other  works  are  useless  to 
a  true  believer,  who  needs  nothing  else  but  a  contrite 
heart  and  a  living  faith.  You  are  zealous  against  Ma- 
homedans, denying  that  Christ  is  the  Sou  of  God,  and 
do  not  give  Him  the  honour  which  belongs  to  Him  as 
a  Saviour  and  Mediator,  but  divide  Him  between  His 
work  and  youi'  own  and  that  of  your  Saints.'' 

Finally,  we  spoke  about  the  various  arts  of  Europe. 
I  said,  in  conformity  with  1  Tim.  iv.  8,  Godliness  is 
profitable  unto  all  tilings,  having  promise  of  the  life 
that  noiv  is,  and  of  that  ivhich  is  to  come — that  the 
pure  knowledge  of  the  Gospel  enlightens  the  under- 
standing of  man,  and  who,  if  he  does  the  wdll  of  God,  is 
blessed  in  all  that  he  undertakes — that  the  reception 
of  the  Gospel  is  the  real  cause  of  the  flom-ishing  state 
of  the  arts  in  our  country — and  that  the  love  which 
oui'  Christians  prove  in  propagating  God's  Word  is  the 
cause  of  the  power  which  England  possesses  in  all  parts 
of  the  world. 


We  set  out  about  ten  o'clock  this  morning.  Alaca 
Melat  asked  nie  on  the  way  many  questions  of  a  spe- 
culative natui-e.  Among  other  things,  he  asked  me 
about  the  anointing  of  Christ  by  the  Holy  Ghost.  I 
said,  this  we  can  prove  clearly  from  Matt,  iii.,  where  we 
read,  that  when  Jesus  was  baptized,  he  went  up  straight- 
way  out  oftheivater:  and,  lo,  the  heavens  were  opened 
unto  him,  and  the  Spirit  of  God  descending  like  a 
dove,  and  lighting  upon  Mm,  from  which  we  also  learn 
at  what  time  Christ  received  the  Holy  Ghost.  "  "SATiy 
ask,''  I  said,  "  about  things  which  are  not  wi-itten,  and 
do  not  see  those  which  are  so  clearly  revealed  in  the 
Scriptm-es  ?  Why  take  upon  yourselves  to  oppose  the 
testimony  of  St.  John,  who  had  seen  and  heard  at  what 
time  Christ  was  anointed  with  the  Holy  Ghost  ?  "  I 
once  heard  fi'om  a  learned  priest  why  they  persist  so 
strictly  in  their  opinion  of  Christ's  being  anointed  in 
the  womb ;  but  I  have  forgotten  to  notice  it  in  my 
daily  remarks.  It  is  necessary  to  study  their  iEthiopic 
books  in  order  to  find  out  their  o])inions,  of  which 
they  have  seldom  a  clear  knowledge. 

He  then  asked  about  Cyril  and  Nestorius.  I  said, 
that  the  doctrines  of  these  two  gi'cat  men  of  the 
Church  requii-ed  to  be  examined  by  the  light  of  the 
Scripture — that  Nestorius  seems  to  have  separated  the 
humanity  of  Christ  from  his  Deity,  and  Cyril  to  have 
confounded  both  together;  while  the  Scripture  faith 
relics  on  a  real  union  of  both  without  separation,  as 
well  as  without  mLxture — that    as  to  the  manner  of 


their  union,  we  are  not  informed  in  Scripture ;  we 
know  only  that  the  Word  zvas  made  Jlesli,  mid  dwelt 
among  us,  manifesting  the  actions  of  real  humanity 
as  well  as  of  Deity.  It  would  be  better,  I  said,  if  they 
left  their  disputes  about  the  anointing  and  the  two 
natures  of  Christ,  and  examined  themselves  in  the 
light  of  God,  to  know  whether  they  were  anointed 
with  the  Holy  Ghost  and  united  to  Christ  or  not.  "  I 
am  much  displeased,^'  I  added,  "  with  your  learned 
men,  seeing  that  they  are  lost  in  vain  speculations, 
and  seduced  from  the  practical  knowledge  of  Christ. 
Humble  yourselves  under  the  Word  of  God,  that  He 
may  exalt  you,  by  giving  you  the  spirit  of  true  wisdom, 
and  leading  you  to  the  salvation  of  yourselves  as  well 
as  of  your  flocks." 

Finally,  he  asked,  whether  mules  were  created  in  the 
beginning,  as  it  was  written  in  a  book  called  Adam, 
that  Adam,  on  leaving  the  garden,  had  ten  mules  with 
him.  I  said,  that  I  had  never  i-ead  this  story  in  the 
Bible ;  but  had  read  in  Gen.  xxxvi.  24.,  that  at  the 
time  of  Anah,  mules  were  found  in  the  wilderness ; 
and  therefore  that  the  story  in  the  book  of  xldam  was 
false,  as  were  many  others  of  their  books,  the  authors 
of  whom  seek  to  be  wiser  than  the  messengers  of  God, 
who  have  wi'itten  their  histories  in  the  light  of  the 
Holy  Ghost.  This  afternoon  we  were  again  covered 
with  an  immense  swarm  of  locusts. 

January  31,  184!0 — This  morning  I  had  the  pleasure 
to  meet  with  Tshara,  son  of  Tshamieh,  Queen  of  Mulo- 

WITH    TSIIARA.  209 

falada.     He  came  to  see  me  in  my  tent.     I  explained 
to  him  the  reasons  why  I  had  come  to   Shoa  and  the 
country  of  the  Gallas,  saying,  that  in  om-  countries  we 
had  become  very  happy   since  our  fathers  had,  more 
than  a  thousand  years  ago,  received  the  knowledge  of 
the  books  which  I  had  in  my  hands  —a  copy  of  the 
Amharic  New  Testament  and  the  Psalms — and  that  as 
we  loved  all  men  on  earth  as  our  brothers,  we  wished 
to  make  them  also  happy  by  the  knowledge  of  this  book. 
Besides,  God  had  commanded  us  to  instruct  all  people 
in  this  book,  as  without  the  knowledge  of  God  and  their 
duties  toward  Him,  they  would  be  lost  for  ever ;  and 
therefore  I  had  come  from  a  distant  country,  surmount- 
ing many  difficulties,  fatigues,  and  dangers,  in  order  to 
show  them  the  way  to  their  eternal  welfare.     Tshara 
took  my  books,  kissed  them,  and  gave  them  to  his  ser- 
vants, who  also  kissed  them.     He  then  said,  "  We  will 
know   about   the  things  contained  in   this  book."     I 
replied,  that  I  would  have  given  it  to  him,  if  he  had 
been  able  to  read  it ;  but  if  he  and  his  mother  would 
allow  me,  I  would  come  and  instruct  his  people  in  their 
own  language,  and  tell  them  all  that   is  ^Titten  in  the 
book.     I  added,   that  I  had  nothing  to  request  from 
him  but  his  permission  to  come,  and  for  the  protection 
of  my  person  and  furtherance  of  my  object  in  this  coun- 
ti-y.     He  promised  to  accomplish   all  that  I  had  re- 
quested from  him  ;  but,  he  added,  "  If  the  King,  my 
uncle,  will  allow  it."     This  young  man's  countenance 
and  manners  were  pleasing.     We  felt   much   attached 


to  each  otlier.  He  said  silently  to  my  servant,  "  This 
is  a  man  of  the  Wake  (God.)"  Finally,  I  asked  him 
for  several  boys  to  take  with  me  to  Ankobar,  in  order 
to  instruct  them  there,  promising  that  I  would  return 
with  them  to  IMulofalada.  He  answered,  "  I  shall  come 
to  Ankobar  after  several  months,  and  then  we  will 
speak  about  this  matter,  and  you  will  speak  with  the 
King/^  I  shall  not  fail  to  acquaint  the  King  of  it,  as 
soon  as  possible.  I  have  spoken  much  with  Alaca 
Serat  about  the  Galla  people,  and  given  him  some  proofs 
of  my  translation,  and  he  seems  not  to  be  against  the 
instruction  of  that  nation  j  but  I  am  afraid  that  others 
will  prevent  the  King  from  giving  his  permission  to  my 
undertaking,  as  they  know  that  the  Christian  faith  is 
not  brought  by  us  to  the  Gallas  in  the  Abyssinian 
manner.  However,  I  shall  explain  to  the  King,  first, 
that  it  is  the  commandment  of  Christ  to  teach  all  peo- 
ple the  Christian  Religion ;  secondly,  the  responsibility 
of  the  Christians  of  Shoa,  if  they  do  not  care  them- 
selves for  the  eternal  welfare  of  the  Gallas ;  thu-dly,  the 
great  advantage  arising  to  the  King  himself  from  the 
christianization  of  the  Gallas,  who  would  then  be  good 
subjects  to  him,  considering  him  a  King  united  to  them 
by  the  bond  of  the  same  faith  ;  and,  fourthly,  I  shall 
beg  him  for  his  permission  in  the  furtherance  of  my 
object,  and  for  the  protection  of  my  person.  At  the 
same  time,  I  shall  speak  about  my  plan  respecting  a 
Mission  among  the  tribe  IMulofalada. 

We  commenced  our  march  this  morning  about  nine 

IX    THE    TERRITORY    OF    MAITSHA.  211 

o'clock.  The  King  had  ordered  a  soldier  to  be  killed^ 
who  had  killed  his  fellow-man  the  day  before.  They 
often  kill  their  own  people,  in  order  to  be  able  to  say 
that  they  have  killed  a  Galla ;  in  which  case  they  re- 
ceive fi'om  the  King  the  value  of  twenty  or  sixty  pieces 
of  salt,  or  a  shield,  horse,  mule,  or  something  else.  On 
our  way  a  singer  of  the  King  asked  me  about  various 
disputed  matters  among  the  learned  of  Shoa.  The 
King  on  every  expedition  takes  with  him  twelve  singers, 
who  begin  theii-  songs  at  midnight,  and  continue  vdih- 
out  ceasing  till  break  of  day.  At  Ankobar  there  are 
one  hundi'ed  and  fifty-six  singers.  These  people  sing 
psalms  and  hymns,  generally  to  the  praise  of  IMary ; 
but  in  such  a  horrible  manner  that  M.  Rochet,  who  had 
his  tent  near  the  King's,  was  unable  to  sleep. 

February  1,  1840 — AVe  set  out  from  our  camp  about 
seven  o'clock  this  morning ;  but  about  ten  o'clock  the 
King  gave  orders  to  encamp.  Having  aiTanged  this,  the 
King  went  out  to  hunt  buffalos  and  elephants,  which 
are  seldom  to  be  met  with  in  the  forests  of  Metta.  M. 
Rochet  and  myself  accompanied  the  King.  About 
eleven  o'clock  we  rested  a  little  on  a  mountain,  where 
we  had  a  most  beautiful  prospect  in  all  directions.  In 
the  south-west,  wc  saw  the  majestic  mountains  in  the 
territoiy  of  Maitsha,  with  their  immense  forests;  and 
on  the  south-west  we  had  before  us  the  high  mountain 
Entoto,  where  several  of  the  Kings  of  Abyssinia  had 
resided,  till  Gragne,  the  King  of  Adel,  destroyed  the 
city  built  there,  the  ruins  of  which,   I   was  informed. 


still  existed  on  the  mountain.  Nebla  Dengliel  is  said 
to  have  been  the  last  King  who  resided  there.  He  took 
flight  to  the  neighbouring  mountain  Ferrer,  and  then 
to  the  mountain  Bokan,  till  he  was  compelled  to  retire 
to  Tigre ;  when  the  Gallas  profiting  by  this  opportunity- 
entered  this  part  of  Shoa  after  the  death  of  Gragne. 
Thus  Gurague  was  separated  from  Shoa.  They  took 
the  most  beautiful  provinces.  The  priests  of  the  King 
showed  me  in  the  territory  of  Mulofalada  several  hills, 
where,  they  said,  chm-ches  had  formerly  been.  The 
history  of  these  churches,  I  understood,  are  written  in 
a  book,  called  Tarik,  which  Sentshar  said  he  possessed, 
and  promised  to  let  me  see  it  after  his  return  to  Ankobar. 
We  also  saw  in  the  south-east  the  high  mountain  Se- 
kuala,  where,  I  was  informed,  is  the  grave  of  a  cele- 
brated saint,  called  Guebra  Manfus  Redus,  to  which 
the  people  of  Shoa  make  annual  pilgrimages.  This 
saint  is  said  to  have  destroyed  by  his  prayers  500  genii. 
There  is  water  on  the  top  of  the  mountain.  To  the 
south  we  observed  the  immense  plain  of  the  H awash, 
in  which  is  a  high  single  mountain,  called  Wata  Dalat- 
sha.  Beyond  the  plain  are  the  mountains  of  Soddo 

About  one  o'clock  the  people  made  a  loud  cry,  the 
King  having  killed  a  great  buffalo  on  his  horse  with  a 
single  lance.  Therefore  the  singing  wives  praised  the 
King.  Killing  a  buffalo  is  an  act  of  great  bravery,  and 
a  man  who  has  killed  one,  is  considered  as  if  he  had 
killed  five  Gallas  :  therefore  he  has  the   privilege   to 

SOURCES   OF   THE    HAW  ASH.  213 

adorn  his  hair  with  a  branch  from  the  juniper  tree. 
About  three  o'clock  we  returned  to  our  camp,  which 
was  on  the  riAiilet  Tshamtsham. 

February  2,  1840— This  morning,  accompanied  by 
M.  Rochet,  I  went  to  the  tent  of  the  King,  to  make  in- 
quiry about  the  sources  of  the  Hawash.  The  King  told 
us  that  there  was  a  large  marsh  between  the  Soddo, 
Betsho  Woreb,  and  INlaitsha  tribes,  from  which,  as  far 
as  he  knew,  the  Hawash  took  its  rise.  As  the  King 
intends  to  march  against  the  Soddo  and  Maitsha  tribes, 
we  shall  be  enabled  to  ascertain  the  correctness  of  this 
information.  About  ten  o'clock  we  passed  a  river,  the 
name  of  which  I  could  not  learn  :  it  forms  the  frontier 
between  the  jNIetta  and  Maitsha  Gallas  ;  and  over  which 
the  Gallas  have  thro^^ni  a  small  bridge,  nicely  con- 
structed. The  country  between  Metta  and  ]Maitsha  is 
neither  inhabited  nor  cultivated  in  the  circuit  of  more 
than  twelve  hom-s,  though  it  is  the  finest  country  of  the 
world,  being  rich  in  water,  wood,  and  a  good  soil ; 
these  tribes  being  at  war  with  each  other.  Thus  the 
enmity  of  man  desolates  a  country  which  God  has 
richly  blessed.  At  present  it  is  the  dwelling-place  of 
elephants,  buffalos,  and  other  beasts.  The  country  of 
Maitsha  is  chvided  into  twelve  tribes,  who  are  in  con- 
tinual hostilities  with  each  other.  The  names  of  them 
are  :  1.  Kuttai,  into  which  we  entered  to-day;  2.  Nono; 
3.  Sankalla;  4.  WoUiso ;  5.  Guma;  6.  Gera ;  7. 
Gooderoo.  About  the  rest  I  have  no  information.  On 
the  south  of  Kuttai,  in  the  i)laiu  of  the  Hawash,  is  the 


tribe  Betsho  Woreb,  whicb  is  to  be  distinguished  from 
Betsho  Fugik,  near  the  Nile. 

About  ten  o'clock  the  tents  were  made  up,  when  the 
King  made  an  excursion  to  a  mountain,  on  which  we 
could  overlook  the  whole  plain  of  the  Hawash  to  its  end, 
where  probably  is  the  marsh  which  the  King  men- 
tioned to-day.  Its  distance  from  the  Nile  may  be  a 
day's  journey.  If  these  countries  were  civilized,  1  think 
the  Hawash  would  become  of  gi'eat  importance  to  com- 
merce, as  it  has  an  extent  of  nearly  200  hom's  from  its 
soui'ce  to  Aussa  in  the  country  of  Adel,  where  it  forms 
a  sea,  and  is  navigable,  at  least  in  the  rainy  season, 
from  its  som'ce  to  Aussa.  I  have  never  heard  that  there 
were  cataracts  in  this  river.  In  the  west  of  the  Hawash 
is  the  Nile,  which  is  navigable  for  a  long  distance.  The 
King,  having  bui'nt  all  the  ^illages  around,  returned  to 
his  camp  at  Logagontsha,  on  a  ri^^Ilet  of  the  same 

February  3,  18  40 — We  left  our  camp  about  eight 
o'clock  this  morning  to  retm'u  to  Angollala.  We  did  not 
wish  to  retm-n  so  soon,  as  we  were  desirous  of  seeing 
the  interior  of  Maitsha,  Soddo,  and  Gurague.  On  our 
retm'n,  we  took  a  south-east  direction.  About  ten 
o'clock,  we  passed  the  river  between  Metta  and  Maitsha, 
and  on  which  we  had  encamped  last  night.  I  learned 
that  it  is  called  Logagontsha.  About  twelve  o'clock, 
we  entered  into  the  territory  of  Metta  Tshamer,  or  Metta 
Wotsheta,  from  the  mountain  Entoto,  which  the  Gallas 
call  Wotsheta.     About  two  o'clock,  we  encamped  at  the 

HOT    "WELLS  OF   FINFINI.  -      215 

foot  of  Entoto,  in  a  plain  called  Tshaffe  holata,  where 
the  King  ordered  a  great  number  of  tillages  to  be 
bui-nt.  At  night  we  observed  the  fire  by  which  the 
people  of  Ababerga  destroyed,  on  a  neighbouring  moun- 
tain, all  the  villages  which  had  broiight  theii-  tributes 
to  the  King.  Thus  they  act  against  all  Gallas  mak- 
ing fi'iendship  with  the  King  of  Shoa. 

Fehruar^j  4 — The  question  of  a  man,  whether  the 
Gallas  are  our  brothers  or  not,  gave  occasion  for  a  con- 
A'ersation  till  we  set  out  about  nine  o^clock.  We 
marched  south-east  as  yesterday.  About  ten  o'clock 
the  people  of  Tshamich  left  us  to  return  to  their  coun- 
trv.  Seeing  Tshara  returning,  I  prayed  fervently  in 
my  heart,  that  the  Lord  would  not  let  him  forget  what 
I  had  said  to  him  about  my  object.  About  twelve 
o'clock,  we  touched  on  our  route  the  territory  of  Adda ; 
and  about  three  o'clock  we  encamped  at  Legemie,  in 
the  ten-itory  of  Finfini,  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the 
mountain  Sekuala,  on  the  west  of  which  is  another 
high  mountain,  called  Fourri.  In  the  east  of  our 
camp  we  had  the  mountain  Ferrer.  The  Sekuala,  En- 
toto,  and  Wata  Dalatsha,  form  a  nice  western  triangle 
of  mountains ;  while  the  Fourri,  Sckiiala,  and  Ferrer, 
form  an  eastern  triangle  in  the  plain  of  the  H awash. 
From  our  camp  we  could  see  very  well  the  mountains 
of  Soddo  and  Gurague,  as  well  as  the  mountains  of  the 
Liban,  Lumic,  and  Arroosi  tribes  in  the  east  of  Gu- 

February   5 — About    ten  o'clock,    we    saw  on   our 


route^  which  was  north-east,  the  hot  wells  in  the  terri- 
tory of  Finfinij  at  the  foot  of  a  chain  of  mountains  of 
the  same  name.  I  saw  three  wells  which  were  very 
sulphurous,  and  so  hot  that  I  could  not  put  my  fingers 
in  it  for  a  moment.  There  are  several  villages  in  the 
neighbourhood.  The  ground  is  very  sterile,  and  does 
not  present  to  the  eye  the  same  beautiful  aspect  as  the 
territories  of  Mulofalada,  Adaberga,  Metta,  and  Mait- 
sha.  However,  it  is  well  inhabited  and  cultivated,  and 
the  people  have  been  attached  to  the  King  for  many 
years.  About  eleven  o'clock,  we  entered  into  the 
territory  of  the  tribe  Germama,  On  the  way  the  King 
received  the  tribute  from  the  Galla  of  Ferrer,  consist- 
ing of  about  twenty  beautiful  horses  and  forty  cows. 
At  the  foot  of  Ferrer  is  a  village  called  Roggie,  where 
there  is  a  large  market,  at  which  the  people  of 
Gurague  and  the  neighbouring  Gallas  sell  their  slaves, 
horses,  cows,  and  other  productions,  coming  from  the 
interior  of  Africa.  This  market  is  on  the  route  to 
Gurague,  which  is  quite  safe  as  far  as  the  mountain  of 
Sekuala  and  the  plain  of  the  Hawash.  On  arriving 
at  this  plain,  the  traveller  is  in  danger  of  being  pil- 
laged by  the  Soddo  Gallas  coming  from  the  west.  From 
Sekuala  it  is  a  day's  journey  to  Aimellele,  the  first  vil- 
lage of  Gurague,  situated  on  a  mountain,  which  I  have 
seen  to-day.  The  Governor  of  the  Ferrer  Gallas  is  much 
attached  to  the  King.  His  name  is  Shambo.  His 
duty  is  to  conduct  the  merchants  to  Gurague.  I  en- 
deavoured to  make  my  acquaintance  with  him ;  but  as 


he  returned  directly  to  liis  countryj  I  had  only  a  few 
moments  to  speak  with  him.  There  are  several  other 
slave  markets  in  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Hawash, 
which  give  much  occasion  for  the  perpetual  wars  in 
which  the  Galla  tribes  are  engaged  with  each  other, 
in  order  to  make  slaves  and  to  sell  them  at  their  mar- 
kets, where  they  are  bought  for  three  or  live  dollars. 

February  Q,  1840 — This  morning  I  gave  my  Amharic 
New  Testament  to  Tecla  IMichael,  a  secretaiy  of  the 
King.  He  read  Matt.  iii.  in  the  presence  of  a  ^laho- 
medan  Hadji,  Ab  Errachman,  the  Interpreter  of  ]\I. 
Rochet.  On  reading  verse  4,  And  his  meat  teas  locusts 
and  wild  honey,  he  asked  whether  John  had  indeed 
eaten  locusts.  I  said,  "  Yes,  locusts  such  as  we  saw 
several  days  ago."  He  replied,  "We  interpret  the  word 
anbata,  (locusts)  to  mean  a  plant  which  is  found  after 
the  rainy  season.'^  I  said,  "  ^^liy  do  you  change  the 
Word  of  God  to  favour  your  fixed  interpretations  ? " 
The  Mahomedan  was  very  glad  at  hearing  my  opposi- 
tion. I  then  said,  "I  know  that  you  arc  afraid  of 
making  John  a  Mahomedan ;  but  you  are  wrong. 
You  sin  in  two  respects  ;  fii-st,  you  change  God's  Word 
on  account  of  your  interpretations,  and  thus  give  oc- 
casion for  ]\lahomedans  to  say,  that  Christians  change 
and  falsify  the  Scriptures ;  and,  secondly,  you  declare 
God's  creation  to  be  unclean,  which  is  not  according  to 
1  Tim.  iv.  8.  We  have  better  and  stronger  ])roofs 
against  Mahomedans,  and  need  not  change  the  word 
locusts.     What  if  John  did  eat  locusts  like  IMahomc- 


dans  ?  He  lias  given  witness  to  Christ,  whose  messen- 
ger he  proved  himself;  which  you  cannot  say  about 
Mahomed."  He  could  not  object  to  anything  that  I 

On  our  way  to-day,  I  spoke  much  with  Alaca  Serat, 
Alaca  Mclat,  and  Tecla  jMichael  about  slavery,  remark- 
ing, that  the  abolition  of  it  had  a  great  influence  on 
the  fall  of  the  Mahomedan  religion.  Then  Alaca 
Melat  asked  me  whether  circumcision  was  customary 
in  my  country.  I  said  that  Christ  had  instituted  bap- 
tism instead  of  circumcision ;  and  that  if  circumcision 
were  necessary,  Christ  would  have  commanded  it.  He 
then  asked,  whether  our  children  just  born  went  to 
the  Lord^s  table.  I  said,  "  No,  because  St.  Paul  says, 
1  Cor.  xi.  28,  Lei  a  man  examine  himself,  and  so 
let  him  eat  of  that  bread,  and  drink  of  that  cup  ; 
but  how  can  childi'cn  just  born  examine  themselves  ?" 
He  then  replied,  "  You  are  right  in  this  respect."  He 
also  asked,  whether  the  tree  in  paradise  had  been  a 
sycamore.  I  said,  "  I  do  not  know;  nor  how  long  Adam 
was  in  the  garden.  I  only  know  that  he  was  there ; 
that  he  transgressed  God's  commandment,  by  desir- 
ing more  knowledge  than  God  had  allowed  him ;  and 
that  he  was  driven  out  of  the  garden."  He  next  asked 
about  the  Apocryphal  books.  I  said,  that  as  they 
were  not  written  in  the  Hebrew  language,  and  several 
things  occm'ring  in  them  inconsistent  with  other 
canonical  books,  we  did  not  consider  them  as  being  of 
equal  authority  with  the  other  books.  Afterward,  Alaca 

AND    OTHER    SUBJECTS.  219. 

Serat  and  Alaca  ]Melat  asked  me,  whether  Christians, 
or  Mahomedans,  or  Pagans,  were  prevailing  in  number. 
I  said,  that  we  reckoned  there  were  about  six  hundred 
millions  of  Heathens,  two  hundred  and  ten  millions  of 
Christians,  one  hundred  and  seventy  millions  of  Maho- 
medans,  and  twenty  millions  of  Jews.  They  were 
astonished  at  the  number  of  heathens ;  and  therefore 
I  took  the  opportunity  of  speaking  about  Missionary 
and  Bible  Societies  in  my  country.  About  nine  o'clock, 
we  entered  into  the  territory  of  the  Abedtshoo ;  first 
into  the  district  Parra  Berck,  and  then  into  the  district 

February  7,  1840 — We  left  our  camp  about  seven 
o'clock  this  morning.  We  passed  several  rivulets  flow- 
ing north-west.  A  priest,  with  whom  I  had  conversed 
some  days  ago,  said  to  me  this  morning,  that  he  was 
condnced  that  all  their  books  were  useless  without  the 
Bible.  I  replied,  "  That  is  not  my  meaning,  but  that 
you  should  examine  them  to  see  whether  they  accord 
with  the  Scripture,  that  being  alone  the  rule  of  Chris- 
tian faith  and  practice."  Alaca  ]\Ielat  asked  mc,  who 
was  the  author  of  the  Epistle  to  the  Hebrews  ?  I  said, 
that  most  of  our  learned  men  are  of  opinion,  that  St. 
Paul  wrote  it,  proving  it  from  Hebrews  xiii.  23.  But, 
he  remarked,  why  did  not  St.  Paul  give  us  his  name  ? 
I  said,  "  We  do  not  know  this  exactly  ;  but  it  seems  that 
St.  Paul,  who  wrote  to  the  Christians  gathered  from 
among  the  Jews,  who  were  much  offended  with  the 
Christian  doctrine,  intentionally  concealed  his  name, 

L  o 


which,  had  it  been  placed  at  the  beginning  of  his  letter 
would  have  prevented  the   reception    of  the    doctrine 
into  the  hearts  of  the  readers.      Besides,  the  Apos- 
tle   Paul    did    not  consider  himself    as    a   messenger 
to  the  Jews,  and  therefore  might  have  thought  it  better 
to  omit    his  name.       He  intended  only  to  prove  to 
the  Hebrew  Christians  the  superiority  of  the   Christian 
faith,  inasmuch  as  Christ  had  infinitely  greater  glory 
than  Moses,  and  as  all  the  types  of  the  Old  Testament 
were    fulfilled    in    Him ;    and    therefore    you  should 
continue  in  that  faith,  not  being  moved  either  by  the 
teachers    of  the   Jews,  or  by  the  fire  of  persecution. 
As    St.  Paul   had  to   deal  with  Jews,   he  proved  his 
doctrine  from  the  Old  Testament,  in   order  to   destroy 
radically   their    attachment    to    Judaism ;     and   there- 
fore the  dress  in  which  he  put  his  letter   should  not 
deter  us  from  attributing  to  him  the  authorship  of  the 
Epistle.^'     Alaca  Melat  was  exceedingly  pleased  with 
what  I  said,  saying,  that   it  was  just  their  opinion.     I 
said,   that  I  did  not  know  this ;  but   wished  that    I 
could  agree  with   them  in   all  other  points  of  Scrip- 
ture.    Alaca  Melat  is   much  attached  to  me,  and  said 
before  others   that  was  I  their  father,  like  Muallem,  an 
Armenian,  who  died  two  years   ago,  and  was   like   an 
Abuna  of  Shoa  :  so  much  did  the  King  like  him,  that 
he  built  him  a  large  house.     Muallem  ordained  several 
deacons  by  imposition   of    hands.      It  would  not  be 
difficult  for  me  to  acquire  the  authority  which  Muallem 
had ;  but  as  in  adhering  to  the  pure  Scripture  truth, 

SIN    THE   CAUSE   OF    DEATH.  221 

I  must  oppose  the  Abyssinians,  I  cannot  therefore 
expect  to  obtain  such  influence. 

Fehruary  8,  1840 — This  is  the  last  day  of  our  expe- 
dition. We  set  out  after  six  o'clock,  A  Debtera  asked 
me  on  our  way,  whether  death  came  into  the  world  on 
account  of  Adam's  sin  or  our  own,  and  why  the  Saints 
died  ?  I  said,  that  God  is  a  God  of  order,  and  has  made 
all  things  with  a  wise  and  holy  order — that  He  intro- 
duced death  on  account  of  Adam's  sin,  as  we  read  Gen. 
iii. — that  as  we  inherit  the  sin  of  Adam,  we  must  die 
hke  him,  because  death  is  the  wages  of  sin ;  but  that  if 
the  life  of  Christ  is  in  us  by  a  real  faith  in  Him,  it  is 
the  order  of  His  love,  that  our  death  should  become  an 
entrance  to  our  rest  and  eternal  joy  with  Christ.  With 
regard  to  the  Saints,  I  said,  that  they  had  all  died,  with 
the  exception  of  Enoch  and  Elias,  who  were  taken 
away  as  types  of  Christ's  ascension,  and  as  evidences 
of  man's  immortality;  that  as  the  Saints  descended 
from  one  sinful  father,  Adam,  and  were  not  free 
from  personal  sins  till  the  end  of  their  lives,  they  were 
not  exempted  from  the  order  of  God's  justice  ;  and  that 
as  the  sun  daily  rises  on  good  as  well  as  bad  men,  accord- 
ing to  the  first  order  and  institution  of  God,  so  death 
comes  upon  all  j  but  its  consequences  are  determined 
by  belief  or  unbelief  in  Christ. 

On  our  way  to-day,  I  conversed  with  several  Gallas, 
and  endeavoured  to  get  some  further  information  re- 
specting their  religious  ideas ;  but  they  could  not  tell 
me  anything  which  I  did  not  already  know.     As  to  the 


rest,  I  must  oppose  those  who  are  of  opinion  that  the 
Gallas  have  no  religious  ideas  whatever.  Certain  it  is, 
that  they  have  an  idea  of  an  invisible  Being,  which  they 
call  Wake— that  man  exists  after  death,  receiving  the 
wages  of  his  bad  or  good  life — that  they  pray  to  the 
Wake,  and  offer  sacrifices  to  the  Deities  Oglia  and 
Atete — and  that  they  have  a  kind  of  priests,  called  Kal- 
litshotshj  and  some  civil  order.  It  is  remarkable  that 
they  very  much  esteem  the  Lord's  Day,  which  they 
call  Sanbata  Guda  (Great  Sabbath),  on  which  day  they 
do  not  labour.  Very  early  in  the  morning  they  pray 
to  the  Wake.  I  am  inclined  to  consider  this  custom  of 
the  Gallas,  if  they  have  not  received  it  from  the  sur- 
rounding Christians,  as  a  remnant  of  the  fii'st  institu- 
tion of  the  Sabbath. 

About  nine  o'clock  we  passed  the  river  Tshatsha, 
and  arrived  at  Angollala  about  ten  o'clock.  The  whole 
priesthood  received  the  King  at  the  foot  of  the  hill 
on  which  his  palace  is  situated.  They  prayed  for  him 
and  blessed  him.  As  he  had  killed  a  buffalo,  he  was 
adorned  with  his  royal  ornaments,  which  he  had  put  on 
half  an  hour  before  he  entered  Angollala.  He  had 
the  hide  of  a  leopard  over  his  ordinary  cloth ;  on  his 
head  he  had  a  plait  of  silver  hanging  in  little  chains 
over  his  face  ;  and  on  his  shoulders  he  had  three  chains 
of  gold,  a  symbol  of  the  Trinity.  If  he  has  not 
killed  anything,  he  is  not  received  by  the  priesthood. 
Having  performed  this  ceremony,  he  entered  his 
palace ;  while  the  soldiers  fired  their  guns,  and  made 

BY    THE    EXPEDITION.  223 

a  long  cry  of  joy.  Thus  the  expedition  ended,  by 
which  the  King  has  obtained  little  advantage,  as  the 
Gallas  refused  their  tribute,  taking  refuge  to  their 
mountains.  With  regard  to  myself,  I  have  reason  to 
praise  my  God  for  having  preserved  my  health  and 
life,  and  for  giving  me  some  hints  for  my  future  IMis- 
siouary  labours. 

I  conclude  wdth  some  remarks  on  the  advantages 
which  I  think  I  have  obtained  by  the  expedition. 

1 .  Having  seen  the  territories  of  the  southern  Gallas 
of  Shoa,  I  am  able  to  form  a  better  judgment  of  their 
situation,  &c.  than  before. 

2.  I  have  observed  some  places  which  I  think  are 
fit  for  the  undertaking  of  a  Galla  Mission.  The  first 
place  where  I  believe  that  a  Missionary  could  begin,  is 
in  the  tribe  of  Mulofalada,  under  the  protection  of 
Queen  Tshamieh.  He  would  there  be  in  the  midst  of 
Galla  tribes ;  and  besides,  he  would  be  far  from  the 
influence  of  Abyssinian  priests.  And  as  to  his  con- 
nexion with  his  brethren  in  Shoa,  he  could  avail  him- 
self of  the  connexion  of  Tshamieh,  who  always  sends 
messengers  to  Ankobar.  A  second  place  for  a  Galla 
I\Iission  is  Ferrer,  on  the  route  to  Guraguc,  in  the 
neighbourhood  of  Bulga  and  Mentshar.  There  a 
Missionary  would  enjoy  more  protection  than  even 
with  Tshamieh.  The  Governor  of  Ferrer  appears  to 
me  to  be  favourable  to  a  Missionary  undertaking  in 
his  tribe,  as  he  has  been  educated  at  Ankobar  with  the 
boys  of  the    King,    and  his  brother,    who  is   Gover- 


nor  of  a  neighbouring  tribe^  is  a  Christian.  A  third 
place  for  a  Galla  Mission  is  perhaps  Mughir,  in  the 
neighbourhood  of  Dcbra  Libanos  and  the  Nile;  but 
as  I  have  not  seen  the  Governor  of  that  tribe,  I  cannot 
say  anything  further  respecting  that  place.  I  have 
only  heard  that  the  Governor  is  much  attached  to  the 
King.  The  Lord  grant  that  the  time  for  the  salvation 
of  the  Gallas  may  come,  and  that  this  great  nation 
may  live  before  Him  !  This  was  my  continual  prayer 
on  this  expedition. 

3.  On  this  expedition  I  have  become  knowTi  to  the 
people  of  Shoa,  as  well  as  to  the  Gallas.  I  have  con- 
versed with  people  from  all  the  provinces  of  Shoa ;  with 
governors,  priests,  alacas,  secretaries  of  the  King,  and 
many  other  people. 

4.  The  Gallas,  as  well  as  the  people  of  Amhara, 
have  seen  my  relation  to  the  King,  who  respected  me 
on  this  expedition.  I  do  not  lay  much  stress  on  this ; 
but  it  is  important  in  the  eyes  of  the  people.  I  know 
the  King's  attachment  to  his  religion  and  priests,  and 
that  I  cannot  trust  him  much ;  but  I  might  protit  by 
his  present  kindness  toward  me  to  procure  fresh  ground 
for  our  Mission  among  the  Gallas,  as  I  do  not  know 
how  the  King  will  behave  himself  in  course  of  time, 
particularly  if  the  Abuna  comes  from  Cairo,  who  is 
expected  in  the  month  of  May. 

5.  I  have  observed  in  what  manner  a  IMissionary 
may  be  useful  on  the  expeditions  of  the  King.  He 
can  preach  and  distribute  books  in  the  forenoon  before 


the  King  sets  out,  and  in  the  afternoon  when  he  rests. 
On  the  way,  he  can  converse  with  many  people,  without 
being  molested  by  beggars  as  at  home. 

Finally,  the  expedition  occupies  but  little  of  the 
Missionary's  time,  as  after  fifteen  or  twenty  days  he 
returns  to  his  ordinary  business  at  home. 

I  beg  leave  to  remark,  that  I  hope  the  Committee 
will  be  pleased  to  take  these  hints  into  consideration, 
so  that  they  may  lead  them  to  the  resolution  of  increas- 
ing the  Shoa  Mission  by  one  or  two  labourers.  At  the 
same  time,  I  remember  what  I  have  before  WTitten 
relative  to  sending  a  skilful  and  pious  mechanic,  who 
would  be  able  to  recommend  the  Mission  to  the  King. 

L  5 



Fehruary  13,  1840 — Several  Debteras  of  the  Churches 
of  St.  INIary  and  St.  George  were  with  me  this  after- 
noon. The  Debteras  of  St.  Mary  asserted  that  Christ, 
after  the  consummation  of  all  things,  will  praise  His 
Father  in  His  human  nature;  while  the  Debteras  of 
St.  George  asserted  that  Christ  will  judge  in  His  deity, 
and  not  praise  the  Father.  "VMiile  they  were  vehemently 
disputing,  I  was  silent,  in  order  to  learn  their  opinions 
and  their  manner  of  disputing.  They  then  begged  me 
to  decide  which  was  right.  I  said,  that  the  Georgians 
were  decidedly  wrong  as  to  the  nature  in  which  Christ 
shall  judge,  because  from  Matt.  xxv.  31;  John  v.  3,  7; 


and  Acts  xvii.  31,  it  is  clear  that  He  will  judge  in 
His  glorified  human  nature  ;  but  whether  He  would 
praise  the  Father  in  that  nature,  we  had  not  sufficient 
proof  in  Scripture,  though  1  Cor.  xv.  28.  might  be 
considered  as  implying  this.  I  then  exhorted  them  to 
desist  from  their  disputes,  and  prepare  their  minds  for 
the  gi'eat  day  on  which  we  shall  wish  to  stand  blame- 
less before  the  Son  of  Man.  A  Debtera  then  said, 
that  the  monk  Abba  Sawold,  in  his  Scripture  lessons 
always  compared  my  Amharic  Pentateuch  with  the 
yEthiopic,  and  that  he  was  pleased  with  it.  Another 
Debtera  spoke  about  the  book  called  Tethanegest, 
(Judgment  of  the  Kings)  saying,  that  it  had  fallen  from 
heaven  at  the  time  of  Constantine  the  Great.  Another 
spoke  about  the  King  of  Shoa,  who,  two  years  ago,  had 
given  strict  orders  that  every  man  should  keep  the 
fasts  which  the  Church  had  appointed ;  and  that  if  any 
one  should  transgress  this  order,  he  should  be  put  to 
prison.  The  King  had  observed  that  many  people  did 
not  fast.  I  spoke  about  the  scriptural  way  of  salva- 
tion ;  and  oljserved,  that  if  a  sick  man  should  add 
another  medicine  to  what  was  prescribed  by  the  physi- 
cian, he  would  die  beyond  doubt. 

February  21 — A  priest  of  Lasta  came  to  see  me,  to 
whom  I  spoke  very  freely  on  the  duties  of  a  Christian 
and  a  Christian  priest.  Afterward  the  King's  painter 
came  to  see  my  book  of  pictures.  In  the  evening,  I 
wrote  a  letter  to  Bombay,  and  prepared  a  chest  of 
iEthiopic  Manuscripts  for  Ali  Arab  to  take  to  Aden. 


February  23,  1840 — Alaca  Serat  called  upon  me. 
We  spoke  about  geography.  I  encouraged  liim  to 
translate  into  iEthiopic  the  geographical  book  written 
by  Mr.  Isenberg,  which  he  promised  to  do. 

February  28 — To-day  the  Abyssinians  are  preparing 
for  the  forty  days  fast,  on  which  account  it  is  called 
Kabala,  when  they  cleanse  their  kitchen  vessels,  par- 
ticularly those  used  in  preparing  meat.  As  my  female 
servant  had  to  pre]:)are  some  oil,  she  said  that  every 
male  person  must  withdraw,  else  the  oil  would  become 
useless  on  account  of  their  shadow.  I  said,  "  I  re- 
quest that  they  remain,  and  see  how  you  prepare  the 
oil.  I  suppose  that  you  wish  to  take  a  part  of  it,  and 
therefore  in  order  to  do  so,  you  have  recourse  to  super- 
stition." The  people  were  therefore  present  when  she 
prepared  the  oil,  which  did  not  on  that  account  become 
useless.  I  took  the  opportunity  of  exposing  then- 
superstitious  opinions,  particularly  their  bearing  amu- 
lets, for  which  they  sometimes  pay  two  or  three 
dollars,  while  they  will  not  spend  one  piece  of  salt  for 
a  copy  of  the  Bible. 

March  7 — To-day  M.  Rochet  departed,  being  furnished 
with  letters  and  presents  for  the  King  of  France.  I  went 
to  Farri  to  see  Mr.  Airston,  a  Scotchman,  who  had 
arrived  in  Shoa  several  days  ago,  and  who  was  sick. 
He  was  described  to  me  by  Mr.  Isenberg  as  a  friend  to 
the  cause  of  Missions. 

March  8—10—1  was  at  Farri  with  Mr.  Airston, 
who  complained  of  suffering  great  pain   in  his  head. 

DEATH    OF    MR.    AIRSTON.  229 

After  ^I.  Rochet  had  bled  him,  he  felt  better,  and 
begged  me  to  go  quickly  to  Angollala  to  inform  the 
King  of  his  arrival,  and  his  waiting  for  orders  to  be 
admitted  to  his  presence. 

March  12 — To-day  I  met  with  the  King,  who 
anxiously  inquired  after  Mr.  Airston,  and  requested 
me  to  bring  him  to  Angollala  as  soon  as  possible. 

March  14 — To-day,  when  I  was  about  setting  out 
for  Farri,  I  received  the  painful  news  that  Mr.  Airston 
died  before  day-break,  and  that  he  had  been  buried  at 
Aigebber,  a  Christian  village  in  the  neighbourhood  of 
Farri.  This  Gentleman's  disease  was  inflammation  of 
the  brain,  occasioned  by  the  hardships  he  had  under- 
gone in  the  country  of  Adel,  particularly  in  the  plain 
of  the  H awash. 

March  18 — I  was  called  by  the  King  to  Angollala. 
He  asked  me  what  he  should  do  with  Mr,  Airston's 
effects.  I  said,  that  in  my  country  it  was  usual  in  such 
a  case  to  send  the  effects  of  a  deceased  person  to  his 
relations  at  home ;  but  as  Mr.  Airston's  country  was 
far  from  Shoa,  I  would  advise  him  to  write  a  letter  to 
his  friends  or  relations,  to  ask  them  what  he  should  do 
with  his  effects.  The  King  however  did  not  follow  my 
advice,  but  took  all  that  belonged  to  this  gentleman. 
Thus  the  relations  of  a  European  dying  in  this  coun- 
try cannot  expect  to  receive  any  part  of  his  property. 
I  consider  that  the  King  gave  a  bad  example  for  the 
future  in  such  a  case ;  for  if  I  should  die,  all  my 
property    would   fall  into  his  hands,  and   my  fellow- 


labourer  would  receive  nothing,  except  what  the  King 
might  give  him  in  the  form  of  a  present. 

March  22,  1840 — Debtera  Habta  Selassieh  came  to 
see  me.  He  gave  me  some  information  respecting  Abys- 
sinian literature.  Their  books,  he  said,  are  divided  into 
four  goobaiotsh,  or  parts ;  the  first  part  consisting  of 
the  books  of  the  Old  Testament ;  the  second,  of  the 
New  Testament ;  the  third,  the  books  of  the  Liks,  or 
perfect  masters,  as  the  works  of  Chrysostom,  Tetha- 
negest,  and,  Abooshaker ;  and  fourthly,  the  books  of 
the  monks.  But  none  of  their  learned  men  studied 
all  these  books,  most  of  them  only  knowing  singing 
and  some  parts  of  the  Old  and  New  Testaments.  Such 
books  as  are  considered  equal  to  the  Bible  (like  Sinodis, 
&c.)  are  called  "  Auwaled ;  "  and  those  which  are  not, 
'' Wootshi,"  which  means  external. 

March  29 — In  the  morning,  I  read  with  Debtera 
Worknech  Matt.  17,  and  then  in  the  book  Meelad, 
which  I  have  mentioned  before.  It  is  divided  into 
five  parts ;  treating,  first,  on  the  Trinity ;  secondly,  the 
Son ;  thirdly,  the  Holy  Ghost ;  fourthly,  the  order  of 
the  Church  and  the  Holy  Supper ;  and,  fifthly,  about 
the  resurrection. 

In  the  afternoon,  Debtera  Kefloo,  who  was  formerly 
sent  by  the  King  to  Mr.  Isenberg  at  Adowah,  came  to 
me,  saying,  that  as  he  wished  to  return  to  Tigre,  he 
would  attempt  to  reconcile  Oobieh  to  us,  I  said,  that 
we  had  no  enmity  against  him  ;  but  that  if  he  thought 
he  could  dispose  him  to  recall  us  to  Tigre,  he  might 


make  the  attempt.  He  said  that  Habta  Selassie,  our 
friend  in  Tigve,  had  requested  him  to  speak  with  me 
on  this  matter. 

April  1 — The  Guragueans  who  arrived  several  days 
ago  came  to  see  me  to-day.  I  read  with  them  in  the 
Gospel,  and  distributed  afterward  several  copies  of  the 
New  Testament  among  them.  If  I  could  be  a  bless- 
ing to  this  people  dm*ing  their  stay  at  Ankobar,  I 
shovild  be  very  glad.  I  asked  a  priest,  whether  their 
Governor  had  received  the  book  I  sent  him.  He  said, 
that  he  had  accepted  it  with  the  greatest  pleasm-e,  and 
had  shown  it  to  all  his  people  -,  that  the  rumom'  was 
spread  over  the  whole  country,  that  a  white  man  had 
come  from  beyond  the  Great  Sea,  having  brought  with 
him  many  Bibles,  carried  on  camels ;  and  that,  after  a 
short  time,  the  people  of  Cambat  and  Sentshero  would 
hear  it.  In  the  evening,  Tshara,  the  Governor  of  the 
Galla  tribe  Mulofalada,  came  and  brought  to  me  an  ox, 
in  sign  of  friendship.  I  said  that  I  did  not  look  for 
this ;  but  I  longed  for  teaching  his  countrymen  the 
'\\'ord  of  God,  as  I  had  told  him  formerly.  He  said 
that  he  would  receive  me,  with  the  King's  permission. 
Finally,  he  promised,  that  if  he  should  come  again  to 
Shoa  in  the  month  of  September  next,  he  would  pre- 
sent me  with  a  fine  horse.  I  replied,  that  I  should  be 
glad  if  he  would  deliver  to  me  some  Youths,  whom  I 
might  instmct. 

April  6 — I  spoke  with  the  King  about  my  inten- 
tion of  teaching  the  Gallas.     He  said,  "You  shall  not 


go  at  present :  you  shall  go  fii-st  with  me  to  Gurague, 
and  distribute  books  :  afterward,  you  shall  go  to  the 
Gallas."  Thus  he  makes  excuses  to  prevent  my  going 
to  the  Gallas.  I  showed  him  the  First  Chapter  of  St. 
John,  which  I  had  translated  into  the  Galla  Language, 
and  written  in  Amharic  Characters.  He  was  much 
pleased,  and  said,  "  You  are  a  strong  people." 

My  servants  to-day  took  the  usual  medicine  against 
the  tape-worm,  which  they  repeat  every  two  or  three 
months.  They  told  me  that  there  were  five  diflferent 
remedies  used  in  their  country ;  fii-st,  Kosso,  which  is 
the  most  general  medicine ;  secondly,  the  fruit  of 
the  Enkoko,  a  kind  of  wood,  like  the  branch  of  a 
vine  ;  thirdly,  Katshamo,  another  kind  of  wood  ; 
fourthly,  the  fruit  of  Kaloa;  and  fifthly,  Maeteri,  a 
kind  of  grass.  This  latter,  they  said,  destroys  the 
worm  for  ever,  or  at  least  for  a  long  time ;  but  it  is 
seldom  found  except  in  the  valleys  of  Bulga. 

April  11,  1840 — To-day  a  priest  from  Bulga  came, 
saying,  that  he  wished  to  know  personally  the  man  who 
had  sent  a  copy  of  the  Ts'ew  Testament  to  his  church. 
I  spoke  with  him  very  openly,  and  I  believe  that  he 
went  away  impressed  with  what  I  had  said  to  him. 
I  then  called  upon  Alaca  Wolda  Hanna,  who  gave  me 
some  proofs  of  their  skill  in  explaining  Scripture. 
The  foxes  have  holes,  and  the  birds  of  the  air  have 
nests :  Matt.  viii.  20,  he  explained  thus  :  Foxes  are 
kings  and  governors,  who  seek  only  for  earthly 
things  ;  but  the  birds  are  the  priests  and  bishops,  who 


riv  to  heaven  in  their  prayers  and  holy  functions. 
Furthermore,  J\latt.  v.  29 :  If  thy  right  eye  offend 
thee,  S(c.  He  said,  that  the  eye  is  the  wife ;  the  hand, 
the  servant ;  and  the  right  eye,  the  child.  "When  I 
told  him  the  way  in  Avhich  we  explained  this  passage, 
he  replied,  "  That  is  but  one  sense  :  we  are  fond  of 
many  senses  of  Scripture."  I  then  showed  him  the 
fooHsh  and  bad  consequences  of  so  explaining  the 
Word  of  God,  and  that  God  would  become  displeased 
^vith  us  if  we  substitute  two  or  more  senses,  just  as 
the  King  of  Shoa  would  become  angry,  if  his  people 
were  to  give  some  other  meaning  to  his  orders. 

A  poor  priest  brought  me  his  son,  whose  name  is 
Sena  Georgis,  in  order  to  have  him  instructed  and  edu- 
cated. I  readily  complied  with  his  request.  Thus  I 
have  three  regular  scholars.  Afterward,  two  other 
priests,  one  from  Bulga,  and  the  other  from  Debra  Li- 
banos,  came  begging  for  books.  Another  also  came 
from  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Karaiu  Gallas,  in  the 
south  of  Shoa,  for  the  same  purpose.  I  gave  to  each 
of  them  a  copy  of  the  New  Testament,  exhorted  them  to 
teach  themselves  and  their  flocks  at  home,  and  to  reflect 
upon  the  conversion  of  their  heathenish  neighbours. 

April  18— This  moi-ning,  three  men,  who  were  sent 
by  Alaca  Senos  of  Tegulet,  came  begging  for  ^Ethiopic 
copies  of  the  New  Testament.  As  I  had  given  them 
all  away,  I  sent  him  the  Amharic  New  Testament  and 
Pentateuch.  A  Debtcra  afterward  came  and  spoke 
about   the   origin   of   the    Gallas.     He  said,  that  the 

23i  ORIGIN   OF    THE   GALLAS. 

mother  of  the  Gallas  had  been  a  woizoro  (lady)  of  the 
Abyssinian  Kings  when  they  resided  on  the  mountain 
EntotOj  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Gurague — that  the 
lady  was  given  in  marriage  to  a  slave  from  the  south 
of  Gurague,  by  whom  she  had  seven  sons,  who  were 
educated  in  their  father's  language  and  customs,  as 
well  as  in  his  business,  which  was  that  of  a  herdsman — • 
that  the  sons  became  great  robbers,  having  gathered 
many  people  with  them — that  three  of  these  sons  were 
called  Tulema,  Karaiu,  and  Maitsha ;  and  hence  the 
Tribes  of  these  names— that  when  they  thought  they 
were  strong  enough,  they  began  to  fight  mth  the  Abys- 
sinians,  and  frequently  vanquished  them,  particularly 
on  one  occasion  near  the  river  Gala,  in  Gurague  ;  and 
hence  they  have  been  called  Gallas  to  the  present  day. 
When  Mahomed  Gragne  desolated  Shoa  and  Gurague, 
the  Gallas  entered  and  took  possession  of  many  fine 
places.  All  this  is  written  in  a  small  treatise,  of  which 
I  have  procured  a  copy.  This  account  of  the  origin 
of  the  Gallas  I  think  is  very  probable. 

April  24,  1840 — To-day  begins  what  is  called  by  the 
Abyssinians  Kenona,  that  is,  for  three  days  the  people 
neither  eat  nor  drink ;  and  the  Bala  Dirgo,  or  those  who 
receive  their  maintenance  from  the  King,  receive  only 
dry  bread,  because  these  are  days  of  prayer.  However, 
I  received  my  portion  from  the  King's  table  as  at  other 
times.  To-day  I  took  another  boy  into  my  house,  who 
wished  to  be  instructed.  He  is  from  Dima  in  Godt- 
sham.     Thus  I  have  four  scholars. 


yipr'il  25 :  Good  Friday — This  is  tlie  first  Good 
Friday  for  the  last  four  years  that  I  have  been  able 
to  celebrate  in  silence  and  without  outward  trouble, 
having  been  formerly  always  travelling  on  this  day.  I 
prayed  that  the  power  of  Christ's  death  might  come 
upon  myself,  as  well  as  upon  this  poor  country. 

Ajjril  27 — This  morning  the  strong  fast  of  the 
Abyssinians  ended.  Since  the  evening  of  the  24th, 
the  people,  particularly  the  priests,  have  abstained  from 
all  food.  If  they  are  not  able  to  overcome  their  bodily 
wants,  they  eat  a  citron.  As  to  the  priests,  they  arc 
in  the  chm'ches  day  and  night,  singing  and  praying ; 
so  that  I  am  surprised  that  they  are  able  to  endure  it 
so  long.  The  Abyssinians  strictly  keep  the  fast  of  the 
primitive  Church,  which  was  forty  hours.  This  morn- 
ing the  priests  of  the  five  chm'ches  w^ent  to  the  King, 
who  called  me  to  see  their  ceremonies.  After  the  priest 
of  each  church  had  finished  their  hjTiins  in  honour  of 
the  King,  each  Alaca  recited  an  epigram  in  praise  of 
the  King.  For  instance,  Alaca  Serat  said  that  the 
Gallas,  who  were  formerly  superior  to  the  Abyssinians, 
have  at  present  been  weakened  as  far  as  Maitsha  by  the 
heroic  virtue  of  Sahela  Selassieh.  Wolda  Hanna,  the 
Alaca  of  St.  George,  said,  ''  The  people  of  the  Franks 
are  come  to  praise  and  adore  the  King  of  Shoa."  In- 
deed, if  they  were  against  me,  they  could  do  me  much 
harm,  as  on  such  occasions  they  speak  what  they  like, 
and  all  the  people  of  Ankobar  are  assembled.  Gene- 
rally speaking,  I  am  convinced  that  in  case  a  strong 

236  NOTICES   OF   THE 

opposition  should  arise  against  our  Mission,  the  priests 
would  have  more  power  than  they  had  in  Tigre,  because 
the  King  is  influenced  more  by  them  than  Oobieh.  I 
therefore  endeavour,  so  far  as  it  is  compatible  with  the 
Word  of  God,  to  make  the  priests  my  friends  ;  and  for 
this  purpose  I  have  found  it  of  great  use  to  read  with 
them  the  Word  of  God,  and  to  explain  it  in  a  simple, 
clear,  and  practical  manner.  Besides,  I  endeavour  to 
keep  up  a  friendly  intercourse  with  the  Alacas  of  the 
Churches,  and  visit  them  sometimes  in  the  church  on 
Lord's  days.  Also  on  fast  days  (Wednesday  and  Friday) 
I  have  resolved,  for  well-considered  reasons,  to  abstain 
at  least  from  meat.  After  the  King  had  kissed  the 
cross  which  was  presented  to  him  by  the  Alaca  of  each 
church,  all  the  people  went  home,  and  then  the  Fasika 
(eating  and  drinking)  began.  The  King  sent  me  a 

April  28,  1840 — This  morning  two  Watos  came  to 
see  me.  The  W^atos  are  Gallas,  dwelling  on  the  mountain 
Wato-Dalatsha,  which  I  saw  on  our  expedition  to  Maitsha, 
in  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Hawash.  The  Watos  say 
that  they  alone  are  pm-e  Gallas,  and  therefore  they  do 
not  marry  the  others.  When  I  asked  about  their  bu- 
siness, they  replied,  that  it  was  to  bless  and  to  curse. 
With  this  view,  they  go  from  tribe  to  tribe,  and  neither 
Gallas  nor  Christians  will  touch  them  ;  being  convinced, 
they  say,  that  whom  the  Watos  bless  are  blessed,  and 
whom  they  cm-se  are  cursed ;  and  they  are  not  wanting 
on  their  parts  to  relate  a  number  of   instances  to  show 

GALL  A    TRIBE   WATO.  237 

the  success  of  their  blessings.     When  the  Watos  enter 
the  houses  of  the  Gallas,   they   are  directly  prevented 
by  them,  who  are  in  great  fear  of  their  cursing.     How- 
ever, they  let  them  eat  and  drink  as  much  as  they  like, 
because  if  they  did  not,  the  Watos  would  curse  them. 
They  are  particularly  fond  of  the  flesh  of  the  hippo- 
potamus, which  they  kill  in  great  numbers  in  the  Ha- 
wash  ;  and  in  this  respect  they  resemble  the  Woitos  in 
Amhara,  whom  I  have  before  mentioned.     The  other 
G  alias  are  not  fond  of  this  flesh,  nor  that  of  hens,  though 
they   sacrifice  the   hen   to    the  bad    spirits    (Sarotsh). 
They  also  told  me  that  they  sometimes  sacrifice  a  white 
cow  to  the  OgUa,   and  a  male-goat  to  the  Atete ;  that 
they  pray  much  on  the   Sanbata  Gudda   (Great  Sab- 
bath), and  take  cofi"ee  on  that  day  in  honour  of  Oglia ; 
on  which  account  coffee  di-inking  is  despised  by  the 
Christians,  as  well  as  in  opposition  to  the  Mahomedans. 
They  said  that  I  might  travel  any  where  with  them 
without  fear.     On  asking  them  about  the  sources  of 
the  Hawash,   they  told  me  that  it  rose  from  a  marsh  at 
the   foot  of  a  mountain  called  Entsheti,  between  Mait- 
sha  and  Betsho  Woreb.     As  they  were  about  to  bless 
me,  I  said  that  I  would  make  them  acquainted  with 
the  blessings  of  Him  who   created  heaven  and  earth, 
and  had  so  loved  mankind  that  He  gave  His  Son  Jesus 
Christ  to  redeem  them  from  sin,   and  to  make  them 
happy  in  this  and  another  world,   if  they  would  only 
believe  in  His  blessed    Son.     I   then  endeavoured  to 
show  them  the  nature  of  sin,  and  the  necessity  of  a 

238  VISIT    TO    THE 

Savioiu"  in  order  to  be  reconciled  to  God.  The  Chris- 
tians who  heard  me  speaking  with  heathens  about 
Christ  and  faith  in  Him,  were  much  pleased. 

April  29,  1840 — All  the  people  were  eating  and 
drinking,  and  many  excesses  wxre  committed  in  the 
streets.  The  Debteras  were  worst  of  all.  One  of  them 
being  drunk  to-day,  cut  off  the  hand  of  his  friend,  and 
took  to  flight.  In  the  evening  they  went  thi'ough  the 
town  begging  for  alms.  I  took  the  opportunity  of  showr 
ing  them  the  bad  consequences  of  their  fasting.  These 
Debteras,  a  year  ago,  went  to  the  Gallas  of  Mentshar, 
the  Governor  of  whom  was  about  to  put  them  to  prison; 
but  as  they  feigned  that  the  King,  who  had  sent  them, 
was  drawing  near,  they  were  set  at  liberty — Two  priests 
from  Latibata  in  Lasta  came  begging  for  books,  which 
I  gave  them. 

May  1 — Three  monks  from  Lasta  came  to  see  me  : 
they  were  great  beggars,  as  monks  in  general  are. 
Afterward,  a  man  from  Bulga  came,  begging  for  medi- 
cine. As  the  King  to-day  distributed  much  clothing 
among  the  poor,  in  memory  of  Tecla  Haimanot,  I  took 
the  opportunity  of  sho^ang  my  people  how  we  are 
clothed  with  Christ's  righteousness  without  our  own 

May  5 — I  went  this  morning  to  see  the  Tabiban  in 
their  monastery,  called  ^lantck,  in  the  forest  of  ]\Iamrat, 
about  two  hours'  walk  from  Ankobar.  On  arriving  at 
the  village,  I  asked  for  the  Alaca,  when,  after  a  consi- 
derable time,  an  old  man  came  trembling,  and  so  much 


afraid  of  me,  that  he  was  about  to  return  immediately 
to  his  house.  I  told  him,  however,  that  I  had  not  come 
with  a  bad  design  :  he  stayed  a  short  time,  but  still 
trembling  from  hands  to  feet.  He  wore  iron  around 
his  loins,  and  his  whole  body  wore  traces  of  self-tor- 
tm'e,  of  which  he  much  boasted.  I  inquired  for  their 
books ;  but  those  I  saw  were  the  same  as  the  other 
Abyssinians  possess ;  namely,  Organon  INIariam,  Melka 
Michael,  and  some  parts  of  the  Bible.  All  were  written 
in  iEthiopic.  I  endeavoured  to  ascertain  whether  they 
had  any  books  in  another  language ;  but  they  always 
said  that  they  had  not.  They  then  introduced  me  to 
the  room  in  which  the  congregations  assemble,  larger 
and  better  constructed  than  any  I  have  seen  of  the 
kind  in  Abyssinia,  though  it  is  very  dark.  In  this 
room,  next  to  the  walls,  are  raised  banks  of  clay,  upon 
which  they  sleep  in  an  upright  posture,  being  secured 
from  falling  by  straps  which  are  fastened  to  the  walls. 
They  were  very  proud  of  praising  their  religious  rigi- 
dity, for  which  they  do  not  come  short  of  the  other 
Abyssinians,  even  of  their  monks.  But  when  I  asked 
why  they  had  recom'se  to  such  austerity,  they  replied, 
in  order  that  they  might  become  righteous  before  God. 
I  then  told  them  about  the  only  way  of  being  justified 
before  God,  according  to  Rom.  iii.  Indeed  this  people 
endeavour  to  the  utmost  to  enter  into  the  kingdom  of 
God  only  by  their  own  performances.  They  said,  that 
they  fast  every  day,  except  on  Saturday  and  Sunday ; 
and  that  they  were  pure  in  body  and  mind.     They  wear 

240  THE    T.\BIBAN. 

Matebs,  like  the  Abyssinians,  and  are  skilful  in  many 
things,  working  in  iron  and  clay.  On  this  account, 
the  King  is  attached  to  them  ;  bvit  the  Abyssinians  are 
in  great  fear  of  them,  considering  them  sorcerers,  and 
will  neither  enter  their  houses,  nor  eat  with  them. 
Their  Alaca  is  feared  so  much,  that  they  believe  that  if 
he  cursed  a  person,  the  curse  would  be  fulfilled  in  a  short 
time.  The  Tabiban  seem  to  me  intentionally  to  en- 
tertain this  fear,  which  protects  them  against  the  per- 
secutions of  the  Abyssinians,  and  prevents  intercourse 
with  those  who  have  not  the  same  ideas  with  them. 
Outwardly  they  arc  Christians,  as  they  go  to  the 
churches  of  the  Christians ;  their  children  are  baptized, 
and  they  have  the  books  of  the  Abyssinians  ;  but  they 
are  strongly  suspected  of  being  Jews.  They  told  me 
that  if  I  had  come  on  Saturday,  they  would  not  have 
received  me,  as  on  that  day  they  neither  go  out  of  their 
houses  nor  kindle  fires.  Their  fathers,  they  said,  came 
from  Geshen,  in  the  north  of  Shoa.  I  could  not  learn 
any  thing  further  from  them  at  this  time.  They  set 
bread  and  Abyssinian  beer  before  me,  of  which  I  was 
not  afraid  to  partake,  though  my  people  would  not.  I 
promised  to  send  them  a  copy  of  the  New  Testament. 
I  went  home,  being  grieved  at  not  having  found  real 
Christians,  as  I  was  formerly  inclined  to  think  them. 
We  seek  in  vain  for  a  hidden  church  in  Abyssinia. 

May  8,  1840 — All  the  people  are  going  to  the  festi- 
val of  Tecla  Haimanot  at  Debra  Libanos,  to  drink  of 
the  holy  well  of  this  Saint,  which  is   said  to  cure   sick 

VISIT    TO    DEBRA    LIBANOS.  241 

men  ou  the  fast  days  of  this  monk.  I  had  resoh-ed  to 
go  and  ascertain  the  truth  of  this  report ;  but  the  instruc- 
tion of  my  four  boys  detained  me  at  Ankobar. 

May  9 — To-day  the  Shoans  each  kill  a  hen.  They 
say  that  they  thus  prevent  sickness  or  other  calamity 
coming  upon  them  or  their  country.  The  Mahome- 
dans  do  the  same.  They  consider  this  as  a  means  of  re- 
conciliation with  God.  Such  is  the  darkness  of  this 
people  !  It  is  evident  that  they  have  adopted  this  custom 
fi'ora  the  Gallas.  Such  things  always  lead  me  to  think 
that  there  is  but  little  hope  of  a  reformation  of  this 
fallen  Church.  However,  the  Lord  can  do  above  what 
we  can  understand  at  present. 

I  finished  to-day  Geography  with  my  boys  ;  but  I 
intend  repeating  it.  I  have  found  the  method  useful, 
first  to  go  over  slightly  a  part  of  the  book,  and  then 
more  closely  afterward,  till  it  is  impressed  on  the 
minds  of  my  scholars. 

May  13 — This  morning  I  set  out  from  Ankobar  for 
Angollala.  The  King  had  invited  me  to  accompany 
him  to  Dcbra  Libanos,  a  holy  place  of  the  Abyssinians, 
the  distance  of  four  days^  journey  from  Ankobar,  in  the 
north-west  of  Shoa.  Tecla  Haimanot,  one  of  the  most 
celebrated  saints  of  Abyssinia,  is  said  to  have  lived 
here.  In  the  month  of  May  the  Abyssinians  celebrate 
the  death  of  this  saint,  at  which  time  pilgrims  from  all 
parts  of  Shoa,  and  other  provinces  of  Abyssinia,  assem- 
ble at  Debra  Libanos  to  drink  from  the  TabeJe,  the  so- 
called  wonder-well  of  Tecla  Haimanot,  in  order  to  be 


24.2  VILLAGE    OF    KUM    DENGAI. 

cured  from  sickness,  and  obtain  forgiveness  of  sins  for 
seven  years.  The  King  himself  usually  goes  to  protect 
the  pilgrims  against  the  inroads  of  the  Gallas.  I  at 
first  determined  not  to  accept  the  invitation ;  but  as  the 
King  had  sent  an  express,  I  thought  it  better  not 
to  refuse  it,  preferring  however  to  go  alone  with 
my  servants  through  the  Galla  Tribes  of  Abedtshoo  and 
Gelan,  in  order  to  learn  the  correctness  of  the  intelli- 
gence which  I  had  received  about  the  recent  conversion 
of  the  Galla  people  in  Shoa  Meda. 

May  14, 1840 — This  morning  we  passed  the  Tshatsha 
river,  which  separates  the  Christians  and  Gallas  in  a 
north-north-westerly  direction  for  the  distance  of  several 
days'  journey.  This  river  flows  through  a  deep  dale 
between  two  hills,  which  prevents  the  passage  on  the 
side  of  the  Christians  as  well  as  of  the  Gallas.  This 
natural  obstacle  may  be  the  reason  why  the  Gallas  were 
formerly  imable  to  destroy  the  whole  Christian  king- 
dom of  Shoa,  and  why  the  King  has  built  Angollala  in 
the  neighbourhood  of  the  passage  of  this  river,  as  he 
has  thus  the  key  to  the  Galla  countries  in  the  south  and 
west  of  Shoa.  Having  marched  the  whole  day  through 
a  plain  land,  in  the  evening  we  rested  at  Kum  Dengai, 
the  village  in  which  Berkie,  who  assists  me  in  my  Galla 
translations,  was  born.  His  people  received  me  very 

May  15 — This  morning  we  left  Kum  Dengai,  accom- 
panied by  about  two  hundred  persons.  Several  petty 
Governors  of  the  Galla  villages  begged  me  tobaptize  them. 


I  said  that  I  could  not  do  so  until  they  had  first  been  in- 
structed in  the  doctrines  of  the  Christian  Religion,  and 
sincerely  believed  in  the  Lord  Jesus  Christ.  It  is  a 
great  pity  that  the  Abyssinian  priests  do  not  require 
something  more  from  the  Gallas  than  being  circumcised 
and  baptized,  wearing  a  string  of  silk,  building  churches, 
and  making  ofi'erings  of  grain  to  the  priests.  The 
King  had  imperatively  required  all  the  Gallas  in  the 
district  of  the  Ayto  Organon  to  become  Christians  ; 
and  being  therefore  in  great  fear,  they  had  been  cir- 
cumcised, and  built  five  ehm'chcs.  These  are  the  facts 
of  the  reported  conversion  of  the  Gallas  in  the  pro- 
vince of  Shoa  Meda.  A  Galla  Mission  might  be  esta- 
blished there ;  but  nothing  can  be  done  without  the 
consent  of  the  King.  I  hope,  however,  that  he  will  not 
prevent  my  going  there.  I  spoke  with  these  simple 
Gallas  respecting  the  real  conversion  of  their  hearts  to 
the  living  God.  They  were  surprised  at  my  not  laying 
stress  upon  those  things  which  the  Abyssinian  priests 
endeavour  to  point  out  as  being  indispensably  necessary. 
At  Kum  Dengai,  the  Tshatsha,  Beresa,  and  three  other 
rivers  join  together  in  a  deep  dale,  and  take  the  common 
name  of  Adabai ;  which,  having  taken  up  several  other 
rivers  and  rivulets,  is  called  Jamma,  in  the  neighbour- 
hood of  Sena  Markos. 

May  16 — To-day  we  arrived  at  Sena  Markos,  where 
the  whole  north  and  west  of  Shoa  is  seen.  In  the  north 
and  west,  a  chain  of  high  mountains  extends,  which 
protects  this  Christian  kingdom  against  the  inroads  of 

M  2 


the  Gallas.  Sena  INIarkos  is  the  second  holy  place  of 
the  AbyssinianSj  where  Sena  Markos,  a  great  saint,  is 
said  to  have  lived  in  the  time  of  Tccla  Haimanot.  The 
entrance  to  this  village  conducts  over  a  steep  rock,  which 
only  one  ])erson  can  pass  in  descending.  The  village  is 
surrounded  in  the  east  and  north  by  a  rock  :  it  is  a 
natural  fortress.  I  asked  after  the  Alaca  of  Sena 
Markos,  who  is  also  Alaca  of  Tegulet  ;  but  the  people 
told  me  that  he  was  at  Debra  Libanos.  I  then  drank 
of  the  holy  water,  which  flows  between  a  rock.  I  found 
it  a  little  heavy.  The  whole  nature  of  Sena  Markos 
shows  that  it  has  been  shaken  very  much  by  earthquakes, 
as  immense  rocks  have  fallen  down  into  the  valley  in 
which  the  majestic  river  Jamma  has  its  course  to  the 
Nile,  which  is  only  three  days  distant  from  Sena  Markos. 
I  observed  the  bed  of  the  Nile  between  the  mountains 
of  Godtsham  and  the  Dera  Galla  tribe. 

May  17,  1810 — To-day  we  passed  the  bed  of  a  dry 
river,  which  Tecla  Haimanot  is  said  to  have  cursed,  be- 
cause the  water  of  it  had  carried  away  the  cross  which 
had  fallen  from  the  hands  of  the  saint.  As  the  cross  was 
found  at  the  mouth  of  the  river,  they  say  that,  on  this 
account,  water  can  only  be  seen  there.  I  told  them, 
however,  that  the  water  flowed  beneath  the  sand.  It  is 
beyond  all  belief  how  fond  the  Abyssinians  are  of  stories 
respecting  their  saints.  We  marched  for  a  long  time 
tlirough  a  district  which  had  been  totally  desolated  by 
the  Avars  of  King  Asfa  Wussen  with  the  people  of  the 
provinces  of  Morabietie  and  Morat.     These  provinces 


were  formerly  governed  by  their  own  King.  Their 
first  King  was  Masamer  ;  the  second,  Abisag;  thethird, 
Jesaias ;  the  foui*th,  Zeddu  ;  and  the  fifth  Hailu.  Asfa 
"VVussen,  King  of  Efat  and  Shoa,  and  the  father  of 
Sahela  Selassieh,  the  present  King  of  Shoa,  vanquished 
King  Zeddu;  and  Sahela  Selassieh  vanquished  King 
Hailu,  and  united  his  kingdom  to  Shoa  and  Efat.  The 
residence  of  these  Kings  was  on  the  hill  Joalo,  at  the 
foot  of  which  we  had  rested  the  day  before.  The  people 
of  Morabietie  and  Morat  are  rude  and  proud. 

May  18 — Yesterday  evening  we  rested  in  the  neigh- 
boxirhood  of  Debra  Libanos,  and  this  morning  we 
passed  the  river  Sega-Wodam,  which  is  the  confluence 
of  the  Sana  Boka,  Sana  Robi,  and  other  rivers,  which 
I  passed  in  the  Galla  Tribes  of  Gelan  and  Woberi. 
The  Sega-Wodam  flows  into  the  Nile.  Pilgrims  are 
advised  by  the  priests,  on  passing  this  river,  to  bathe 
themselves  in  it  before  they  drink  of  the  holy  water  of 
Tecla  Haimanot.  Though  I  had  warned  my  people 
against  such  a  foolish  practice,  yet  they  cast  themselves 
naked  into  the  river.  We  then  ascended  the  mountain 
on  which  Uebra  Libanos  is  situated,  when  I  learnt 
that  the  King  was  at  the  wells.  I  hastened  therefore 
to  meet  him.  After  the  return  of  the  King  to  his 
tent,  he  conversed  with  me  for  a  short  time,  and  said, 
"  You  have  done  well  in  coming  to  see  our  miracles." 
I  said,  that  I  intended  to  go  the  next  day  and  examine 
the  quality  of  the  water. 

May  19 — To-day  I  set  out  to  visit  the  well  of  Tecla 

246       VISIT    THE   WELL    OF    TECLxi    HAIMANOT. 

Haimanot.  The  water  wliicli  I  took  disagreed  with 
me.  I  observed  traces  of  iron  in  the  stones.  It  is  a 
mineral  water ;  but  the  superstition  of  the  xVbyssinians, 
and  the  cunningness  of  the  priests,  have  attributed  to 
it  miraculous  powers.  They  drink  the  water  from 
five  to  ten  days.  I  was  asked  by  many  people,  par- 
ticularly priests,  what  I  thought  of  it.  I  said,  that 
water  of  this  kind  also  existed  in  my  country ;  that 
God  had  blessed  this  water  with  healing  properties  for 
the  good  of  men ;  and  that  therefore  they  should  give 
the  glory  to  God,  and  not  to  Tecla  Haimanot.  I  then 
directed  them  to  Christ.  Beggary  and  monkery  are  very 
great  at  Debra  Libanos,  and  I  do  not  much  like  the 
place.  I  sent  a  copy  of  the  ^thiopic  New  Testament 
to  the  Alaca  of  the  Church  of  St.  Marj^,  which  he 
accepted  with  much  pleasure.  The  priests  of  this 
Church  say,  that,  many  years  ago,  a  cross  fell  from 
heaven,  which  a  monk  having  found  gave  it  to  their 
Church.  AVhen  the  pilgrims  have  drank  from  the 
well  of  Tecla  Haimanot,  they  go  to  this  Church  to  kiss 
the  cross.  Debra  Libanos  is  a  natural  fortress,  and 
cannot  be  taken  without  European  arms.  The  village 
is  not  very  large. 

May  21, 1840 — To-day  the  King  went  vAih.  the  pil- 
grims to  the  place  where  water  flows  out  from  the  rocks. 
It  is  difficult  to  ascend  this  place.  The  King  himself 
took  some  of  the  water  in  his  own  cup,  and  presented 
it  to  the  people.  Here  they  dug  some  mire,  of  a  blue 
colour,  and  painted  their  faces  in  the  form  of  a  cross. 

RETURN    TO    ANKOBAR.  217 

believing  that  this  will  prevent  sickness.  There  is  a 
tree  here  which  is  spht,  through  which  they  say  Tecla 
Haimanot  saved  himself  on  the  inroad  of  the  Gallas ; 
but  I  told  them  that  at  the  time  of  Tecla  Haimanot 
the  Gallas  were  not  known  in  Abyssinia.  The  King 
ha\ing  performed  this  ceremony,  gave  orders  to  return 
to  Augollala.  We  marched  first  westward  to  the 
mountains  of  Mugher,  and  then  through  the  Tribes 
of  Gullale,  Tshidda,  AVoberi,  Gelan,  and  Abedtshoo, 
arriving  at  Augollala  on  the  26th  of  May. 

May  27 — To-day  I  arrived  at  Ankobar.  I  received 
the  painful  news,  that  ]\Ir.  Kielmaier,  a  German  officer 
and  friend  of  mine,  had  died  on  the  road ;  and  that  his 
servant,  Husseui,  or  Samuel  Georgis,  as  he  was  called 
by  the  Rev.  W.  Kruse,  who  baptized  him  at  Cairo, 
was  on  the  way,  having  with  him  his  master's  luggage. 

May  28 — To-day  Ibrahim,  the  servant  of  Mr. 
Airston,  whose  death  I  mentioned  on  the  14th  of 
March,  died  in  consequence  of  hectic  fever.  He  was 
interred  in  a  place  called  Kobastle,  in  the  lower  part 
of  Ankobar,  where  ]Mahomedans  are  usually  buried. 
I  with  my  servant  and  the  Armenian  Pietros  attended 
the  funeral.  The  body  was  covered  with  a  white 
Abyssinian  cloth,  and  carried  on  a  barrow  to  the 
grave,  which  was  dug  in  the  form  usual  witli  the 
Christians,  no  Mahomedans  being  at  hand  to  make  it 
according  to  their  custom.  It  was  about  three  feet 
deep,  and  very  narrow ;  so  that  there  was  scarcely  room 
for  the  body.     Wood  was  then  placed  uj)on  the  corpse. 


upon  which  they  put  earth  and  stones ;  so  that  the 
rain  shoukl  not  penetrate,  nor  hyaenas  be  able  to  un- 
cover the  grave.  The  effects  of  the  deceased  were  then 
taken  an  account  of  by  the  King's  people,  and  taken  into 
his  magazine.  The  people  who  took  care  of  Ibrahim 
during  his  sickness  did  not  receive  any  portion  of  his 

May  30, 1840 — A  priest  of  Gurague  came  to  see  me. 
He  said  that  he  had  been  in  Cambat ;  that  the  pre- 
sent King,  a  good  old  man,  was  called  Degoie ;  that 
the  capital  city  was  called  Karemsa,  situated  on  a 
mountain  ;  that  this  kingdom  is  not  very  large  ;  and  that 
there  are  only  fifteen  churches,  but  no  priests.  Cam- 
bat  is  distant  from  Gurague  only  six  days  journey. 

In  the  evening,  Debtera  Habta  Selassieh  came, 
begging  me  to  teach  him  the  Hebrew  Language  before 
he  learnt  the  Greek,  which  he  had  begun.  As  the 
Hebrew  has  a  greater  affinity  to  the  Abyssinian  lan- 
guages, I  thought  that  he  would  soon  advance  in  the 
Hebrew,  and  therefore  I  complied  with  his  request. 

June  1 — Samuel  Georgis  arrived  to-day  at  Farri, 
and  confirmed  the  news  which  I  had  before  received 
of  his  master's  death.  I  took  to-day  a  fifth  boy  into 
my  house,  who  wished  to  be  instructed  by  me.  His 
name  is  Himtza  Roophael,  a  native  of  Dima,  in  Godt- 
sham.  He  was  with  Ibrahim,  whose  death  I  have 
before  mentioned.  In  the  evening  I  began  Hebrew 
with  Habta  Selassieh. 

June  2 — I  began  Bible  history  with  my  boys.    "With 


regard  to  other  branches  of  knowledge,  I  think  it 
better  at  first  to  restrict  myself  to  geographj%  uni- 
versal, and  natiu'al  history.  I  consider  biblical  in- 
struction as  the  principal  part.  In  the  morning  and 
evening  I  have  service  with  the  boys.  Besides  which 
I  intend  to  preach  a  sermon  every  Lord's  day  to  the 
people  of  my  house,  but  without  excluding  others 
who  may  wash  to  hear  me.  The  Lord  be  praised 
for  the  gracious  assistance  which  He  has  hitherto 
given  me  ! 

Ju7ie  8 — I  was  called  by  the  King  to  Angollala, 
where  I  met  with  Samuel  Georgis.  The  King  asked 
me  about  the  luggage  of  Ibrahim,  as  he  had  not 
received  the  whole  of  it.  I  replied,  that  as  Ibrahim 
was  not  in  my  house,  I  could  not  tell  who  had  taken 
his  property.  He  then  said,  "  I  know  that  you  have 
not  taken  anything;  but  the  two  monks  and  other 
people  who  were  with  Ibrahim  in  the  same  house 
have  stolen  what  belonged  to  me.  I  shall  make  them 
swear  before  the  priests."  I  said,  that  the  monks 
would  not  care  for  that,  as  they  had  told  me  that  if 
they  should  be  excommunicated  in  Shoa,  they  would 
go  to  Cairo,  where  the  Coptic  Patriarch  would  dis- 
annul the  excommunication. 

June  13 — After  returning  from  Angollala,  I  arranged 
the  lessons  with  my  boys  in  the  following  manner. 
In  the  forenoon,  morning  prayer,  reading  of  the  Bible 
and  exposition,  writing,  and  biblical  narrations.  In 
the  afternoon,  reading  of  the  Bible,  biblical  doctrines 
M  5 


in  a  systematic  manner,  geography,  and  imiversal  his- 
tory.    Service  in  the  evening. 

June  20,  1840 — I  have  been  unwell  for  the  last  three 
days.  My  sickness  began  with  fever  and  swelling  in 
my  neck.  My  people  believed  that  I  had  got  what 
they  call  "  Lagheda-sickness,"  or  swelling  of  the  ton- 
sils, and  were  afraid  that  I  should  die.  They  said,  that 
the  Abyssinians  generally  cut  off  the  swollen  parts; 
and  that  if  they  did  not  do  this,  there  was  no  hope  of 
recovery.  Tliinking  that  this  operation  might  be  of 
use,  I  did  not  refuse  it  j  but  when  they  failed  in  remov- 
ing the  swelling,  I  requested  them  to  leave  me,  telling 
them  that  I  knew  what  was  best  myself.  Then  they 
spoke  about  bad  spirits,  which  they  said  would  kill  me 
if  I  did  not  follow  their  advice.  In  the  evening  I  was 
much  better. 

Jime  22 — To-day,  with  the  Lord's  gracious  assis- 
tance, I  was  able  to  perform  my  ordinary  business. 

June  27 — The  King  having  returned  from  his  expe- 
dition against  the  Sirto  Gallas  in  the  south  of  Shoa,  I 
was  called  by  him  to  Angollala  with  Samuel  Georgis. 

June  28 — The  King  spoke  with  me  about  the  Letter 
which  he  intended  to  write  to  India.  The  Letter, 
which  he  ordered  me  to  translate  into  the  English  Lan- 
guage, iTins  thus : — 

"May  this  Letter,  which  is  sent  by  Sahela  Selassieh, 
the  King  of  Shoa  and  Efat,  of  Gurague  and  of  the 
Galla  nation,  come  to  the  great  English  Company  in 
India.     Are  you  well  ?     I  am  quite  well.     About  your 


happiness,  I  liave  been  informed  by  your  countrymen  ; 
and,  as  I  heard  of  your  kindness  toward  all  men,  I  was 
much  rejoiced,  and  resolved  upon  making  friendship 
with  you.  WTiether  my  person  is  bad  or  good,  you 
will  have  heard  from  your  countrymen,  who  have  been 
in  my  country.  I  wish  very  much  that  it  may  please 
you  to  make  friendship  with  me.  God  has  given  me 
a  good  and  large  kingdom  ;  but  arts  and  sciences  have 
not  yet  come  to  my  country,  as  they  have  to  yours. 
May  it  therefore  please  you  to  assist  me,  particularly 
in  sending  guns,  cannon,  and  other  things,  which  I 
have  not  in  my  country.  I  do  not  state  how  much  you 
shall  send  me.  You  may  act  according  to  your  love 
and  kindness,  which  are  known  everywhere.  As  to 
myself,  I  am  ready  to  send  to  yovi  things  which  are  not 
in  your  country.  You  may  please  to  tell  me  what  you 
wish,  and  I  shall  send  it  to  you.  The  reason  that  I 
did  not  send  it  to  you  at  present,  is,  that  I  did  not 
know  completely  what  you  wish  from  me.  I  have  sent 
to  you  two  horses,  having  understood  that  you  like 
them.  This  may  be  considered  as  a  sign  of  friendship. 
I  do  not  think  that  it  is  a  fit  present  to  you  ;  but  you 
may  consider  it  as  the  beginning  of  my  love  toward 
you,  and  of  my  friendship  with  you." 

A  similar  letter  was  written  to  C apt.  Haines  at  Aden, 
accompanied  by  a  present  of  a  horse  and  mule,  a  gas- 
sela  skin,  and  an  Abyssinian  cloth. 

June  29 — To-day  I  returned  to  Ankobar.  On  the 
way    we  were  overtaken  l>y  heavy  rain,   which   in    a 


short  time  swelled  tlie  rivulets  so  much,  that  one  of  my 
servants,  who  was  carrying  my  provisions  and  kitchen 
vessels,  was  carried  away  by  the  stream,  and  would 
have  been  lost  if  he  had  not  seized  a  large  stone  which 
was  in  the  middle  of  the  water.  All  the  luggage, 
however,  which  he  had  with  him  was  lost. 

July  6, 184'0' — Samuel  Georgis  set  out  from  Ankobar 
to  go  to  Aden.  I  shall  be  very  glad  if  his  mission  proves 
successful,  as  otherwise  I  am  afraid  that  the  King  will 
become  cold  toward  me  and  all  Europeans. 

Juli/  14 — In  my  sermon  to-day,  I  explained  to  my 
people  what  was  the  divine  image  of  Adam,  and  what 
was  his  fall.  In  the  afternoon,  1  examined  my  boys 
about  my  morning  sermon.  Afterward,  we  read  the 
history  of  Balaam.  I  found  much  consolation  in  the 
words : — How  shall  I  curse,  ivhom  God  hath  ?wt 
cursed  ? 

July  21 — I  preached  about  the  new  birth,  according 
to  John  iii.  6.  Two  Debteras  were  with  us.  Afterward, 
I  spoke  with  them  about  their  neglecting  the  instruc- 
tion of  their  people.  Debtera  AVorknech  said  that  the 
priests  themselves  were  not  instructed,  and  gave  me  the 
following  instance  of  their  ignorance.  Some  years  ago, 
the  Gallas  on  the  Nile  made  an  inroad  into  Godtsham, 
when  a  Galla  took  from  the  house  of  a  Christian  the 
Books  of  Samuel  and  the  Kings  in  iEthiopic.  Some 
time  afterward  the  King  of  Shoa  fell  upon  these  Gallas, 
and  a  Christian  soldier  from  Bulga  found  the  books  in 
the  house  of  a  Galla,  and  took  them  to  Bulga,  when 


he  showed  them  to  his  priests,  who  considering  them 
conjm-ing-books,  would  not  touch  them.  Afterward, 
Worknech  went  to  Bulga,  and  knowing  their  bibhcal 
contents,  bought  them  for  three  pieces  of  salt,  though 
the  usual  price  is  three  dollars. 

July22 — I  called  in  the  morning  upon  Alaca  AYolda 
Hanna,  who  always  asks  me  about  such  passages  of 
the  Bible  as  he  does  not  well  understand.  Afterward, 
I  received  a  friendly  letter  from  Capt.  Haines  at  Aden, 
by  the  arrival  of  Ali  Arab,  who  brought  mc  some 
money.  The  collector  of  taxes  had  taken  from  the 
money  thirty-three  dollars;  but  the  King  returned 
them  to  me,  saying,  that  he  did  not  levy  custom  upon 
my  money.  My  people  advised  me  to  offer  the  thirty- 
three  dollars  to  the  King;  but  I  said  that  I  never 
would  make  a  present  in  money,  as  it  would  be  of  bad 
consequences  in  future;  and  besides  I  had  no  money 
to  spare. 

July  28 — In  my  sermon  to-day  I  instructed  my 
people  about  the  real  nature  of  true  repentance,  accor- 
ding to  Joel  ii. 

July  29 — In  translating  Matt,  xix.,  my  Galla  in- 
formed me  that  the  Gallas  took  the  wife  of  a  deceased 
brother.  A  Dcbtera  from  Mantek,  the  monastery  of 
the  Tabiban,  came  to  see  me.  He  praised  much  their 
lashing  themselves  with  thorns  at  appointed  times, 
washing  their  feet  till  they  become  white,  and  their 
old  Alaca.  I  spoke  with  him  about  the  Pharisee  and 
publican,  Luke  xviii. 


August  4),  1840 — To-day  Guebra  Georgis,  whom 
I  had  not  seen  for  more  than  a  month,  came  to  see  me. 
He  said,  that  he  had  been  in  a  monastery  called  Mamrat 
(mother  of  mercy,)  at  the  foot  of  a  high  mountain, 
and  had  read  the  whole  New  Testament  with  three 
monks,  who  had  begged  him  to  teach  them  Amharic, 
As  the  sister  of  his  father  had  been  disgraced  by  the 
King,  she  went  to  the  monks  of  this  monastery,  in 
order  by  their  assistance  to  be  reconciled  to  the  King. 
Guebra  accompanied  her  to  the  monastery.  He  told 
me  that  these  monks  fed  a  number  of  sick  and  poor 
people  at  the  expense  of  the  monastery.  This  is  the 
first  example  of  the  kind  I  have  heard  of  in  Shoa. 
I  have  frequently  thought  of  establishing  a  similar  insti- 
tution, in  which  I  might  supply  poor  people  not  only 
with  bread  for  the  body,  but  more  particularly  with  the 
bread  of  life.  I  have  calculated  that  the  expenses  would 
be  about  twenty-five  to  thirty  dollars  for  ten  persons. 
Indeed  such  an  institution  would  highly  recommend 
our  work  in  the  eyes  of  the  Shoans,  and  the  King  in  par- 
ticular. But  such  an  institution  could  not  be  establish- 
ed without  the  consent  of  the  King,  as  a  separate 
building  would  be  requisite ;  but  I  do  not  think  that 
he  would  refuse  a  petition  to  do  good  to  the  poor  people, 
to  whom  he  pays  attention  in  many  respects. 

August  5 — \^liile  I  was  instructing  my  boys,  a  monk 
came  begging  me  for  a  rosary,  having  lost  his  own.  I 
said,  that  I  had  none,  and  was  not  in  want  of  any,  as 
I  was  ordered  by  the  Word  of  God  to  pray  continually. 


SO  that  I  could  not  count  my  prayers  ;  that  such  a  con- 
tinual praying  intercourse  with  the  Lord  was  the  ope- 
ration of  the  Holy  S})irit,  and  could  not  be  bought ; 
and  that  he  should  pray  for  this  Holy  Spirit,  and  offer 
his  whole  heart  to  Him,  and  then  he  would  not  want 
such  a  useless  thing.  The  monk  went  away  gi'ieved  at 
not  being  able  to  say  over  his  beads. 

August  6 — To-day  the  sixteen  days'  fast  of  the  Abys- 
sinians  begin,  in  memory  of  the  pretended  ascension 
of  St.  Mary.  The  King  went  to  Machal  Wans,  to 
keep  there  a  sti'ong  fast,  which  is  prescribed  by  the 
Church  at  this  time.  Children  also  are  commanded  to 
fast,  on  which  account  I  spoke  to  my  boys  respecting 
fasting.  As  children  also  receive  the  Sacrament  at  this 
time,  I  instructed  them  about  this  holy  mystery,  ac- 
cording to  Matt.  xxvi.  27,  and  1  Cor.  xi.  ;  and  parti- 
cularly endeavoured  to  expose  their  error  respecting 
this  sacrament,  showing  them  from  1  Cor.  xi.  29 — 31 
that  an  unholy  reception  of  it  will  produce  sickness, 
and  in  general  a  judgment  on  body  and  mind. 

August  1 1 — A  man  from  Debra  Bcrhan  came, 
begging  for  an  iEthiopic  New  Testament.  I  said,  that 
I  had  given  away  all  that  I  possessed.  I  bought  a 
beautiful  skin  of  a  red  cow  for  six  pieces  of  salt.  The 
Shoans,  particularly  the  people  of  Morat,  are  skilful  in 
pre])aring  skins.  They  take  the  bark  of  a  tree,  called 
(juffu,  and  pulverize  it ;  then  they  put  it  with  the  skin 
into  water  for  about  eight  days,   after  which  tlie  skin  is 

256  CUSTOMS    OF    THE   GALLAS. 

taken  out,  rubbed  with  the  juice  of  lemons,  and 
dried  in  the  sun. 

My  Galla  made  me  acquainted  with  some  other  cus- 
toms of  his  people.  Every  eight  years,  he  said,  they 
appoint  a  Heiu,  or  general  Governor,  a  man  who  has 
the  reputation  of  being  a  warrior  and  public  speaker, 
who  passes  through  the  whole  tribe,  hearing  the  com- 
plaints of  the  oppressed,  and  deciding  in  cases  of  jus- 
tice. He  also  decides  in  matters  of  war  and  peace. 
Wherever  he  goes,  he  is  respected,  and  supplied  with  all 
that  he  wants.  When  the  eight  years  have  expired,  he 
is  called  Gedamotsh,  a  repeated  Governor.  He  cannot 
be  chosen  the  second  time.  In  the  south  of  Shoa  to 
the  Hawash,  three  Heius  are  appointed.  If  a  Galla 
likes  a  stranger,  he  makes  him  his  Mogasa,  or  favourite, 
declaring  before  the  Abadula,  the  governor  of  a  small 
district,  that  he  has  made  him  his  friend,  and  that  no 
man  should  touch  him.  This  ceremony  is  performed 
before  the  whole  people,  and  sacrifices  are  offered.  If 
any  one  should  kill  or  ofi'end  the  Mogasa,  he  is  obliged 
to  pay  100  kum  or  100  oxen,  which  is  the  price  paid 
by  a  murderer.  If  you  have  become  the  Mogasa  of  a 
Galla,  you  can  go  through  the  whole  tribe ;  but  if  you 
have  not,  the  Gallas  would  kill  you  immediately.  I  do 
not  doubt  that  Tshara,  the  Governor  of  Mulofalada, 
would  give  me  this  privilege  if  I  should  go  to  his 

August  13, 1840 — I  called  upon  Alaca  Wolda  Hanna, 
who  wished  to   study  the  Hebrew   language,   having 

KINGDOM    OF    WOLAMO.  257 

been  informed  of  Habta  Selassieh's  having  advanced  in 
this  study  in  a  short  time.  Thus  I  have  two  scholars  in 

August  17 — The  father  of  the  present  King  of  Shoa 
is  said  to  have  foretold,  in  consequence  of  a  dream^  that 
at  the  time  of  his  son,  Sahela  Sclassieh,  red  people,  (thus 
white  people  are  called  by  the  Abyssinian  s)  would  come 
and  teach  all  arts  and  wisdom.  As  several  Whites  have 
lately  arrived  in  Shoa,  the  people  begin  to  think  that 
this  prophesy  is  about  to  be  accomplished. 

A  slave  from  Wolamo,  in  the  south  of  Cambat,  gave 
me  some  information  respecting  his  country.  Wolamo 
is  a  small  kingdom  inhabited  by  Christians,  who  are 
^\ithout  priests.  The  capital  city  is  called  Wofana,  and 
a  large  river  called  Uma,  of  which  I  had  heard  before, 
flows  through  the  country.  The  people  are  circumcised, 
but  do  not  keep  fasts,  and  have  but  few  festivals  in  the 
course  of  the  year.  A  slave  is  bought  for  twenty  pieces 
of  salt.  The  neighbouring  Galla  tribes,  are  Kulla, 
Worata,  and  Limo. 

As  the  above  mentioned  slave  had  been  first  sold  to 
Caffa,  and  thinking  that  he  would  be  able  to  give  me 
some  information  about  this  country,  I  asked  him  some 
questions.  The  King  of  CafFa  is  a  warrior,  and  makes 
war  with  all  his  neighbours.  In  the  south  of  Caffa 
there  is  a  black  people,  called  Golda,  who  go  nearly 
naked.  Tliey  do  not  eat  the  flesh  of  cows,  but  only 
nuikc  use  of  the  milk.  Another  people  of  this  kind 
are  called  Doko,  who  are  at  war  with  Caffa.  The  capital 


cities  of  Caffa  are  Dentsli  and  Bonga.  A  great  river, 
called  Kibbe,  flows  from  Caffa  to  the  Nile,  but  others 
say  to  the  south.  Probably  it  may  be  the  Quilimance, 
which  flows  into  the  Indian  Ocean  at  the  higher  parts 
of  the  Melinde.  The  people  of  Caffa  manufacture  good 
cloth.  A  good  piece  is  bought  for  six  pieces  of  salt. 
The  currency  of  Caffa  consists  in  pieces  of  salt ;  silver 
money  not  being  known.  The  cm-rency  of  Wolamo 
is  also  in  salt,  which  they  get  from  the  Arroosi  Gallas. 

August  18,  1840 — I  spoke  in  my  sermon  about  real 
faith,  according  to  1  John  v.  I  was  told  that  Alaca 
Wolda  Hannahad  taken  my  Hebrew  Bible  to  his  church, 
and  recommended  the  study  of  Hebrew. 

August  30 — A  slave  from  Sentshiro  gave  me  some 
information  respecting  his  country.  The  present  King, 
Amo,  is  a  warrior,  and  likes  all  people  of  this  kind.  It 
seems  to  me  that  the  people  of  Sentshiro  were  formerly 
Christians,  because  they  have  circumcision  and  some 
Christian  feasts ;  but  otherwise  they  do  not  appear  to 
know  any  thing  about  Christianity.  The  capital  city  is 
called  Anger.  The  Sentshii'os,  like  the  Gallas,  do  not  eat 
hens.  Goats  also  are  not  eaten.  The  Guraguean  mer- 
chants go  to  Sentshiro,  and  receive  Dirgo  (maintenance) 
from  the  King  till  they  return  to  then*  country.  Women 
only  are  sold  as  slaves  to  other  countries  :  male  slaves 
from  Sentshiro  are  obtained  by  other  nations  by  means 
of  war.  The  reason  why  females  only  are  sold,  is 
stated  to  be  this — ]\Iany  ages  ago,  the  King  of  Sent- 
shiro  commanded  a  man   of  quality  to  slaughter  his 


wife,  as  the  King  needed  her  as  a  medicine.  The 
man  went  honie^  but  did  not  venture  to  kill  his  wife, 
though  he  found  her  asleej).  The  King  then  ordered 
the  wife  to  kill  her  husband,  which  she  did ;  and  on  ac- 
count of  this  female  cruelty,  the  custom  arose  of  selling 
only  women  to  other  countries. 

There  are  people  in  Sentshiro  who  have  no  other 
duties  to  pay  than  to  deliver  their  first-born  sons  to  the 
king,  who  appoints  these  unfortunate  creatures  for 
sacrifices.  The  reason  of  this  barbarity  is  stated  to  be 
this — Formerly  a  high  pillar  of  iron  stood  in  the  neigh- 
bourhood of  the  capital  city,  and  as  long  as  this  column 
existed,  the  people  of  Sentshiro  had  neither  summer  nor 
winter,  but  had  rain  the  whole  year,  and  the  fruits  did 
not  come  to  maturity.  The  king  having  asked  his 
learned  men  what  should  be  done  in  order  to  secure  the 
seasons  of  summer  and  winter,  they  cut  downi  the  pillar 
nearly  to  the  ground,  when  the  rain  decreased,  and  the 
fruits  ripened.  But  they  advised  the  King  that  it  was 
necessary,  in  order  to  prevent  a  return  of  the  former 
confusion,  always  to  sacrifice  a  number  of  first-born 
sons  to  the  Deity.  A  part  of  the  pillar  is  still  to  be 
seen,  as  I  learned  from  my  informant. 

This  evening  one  of  the  King's  slaves,  who,  with  her 
husband,  resides  in  the  fore  part  of  my  house,  having 
been  delivered  of  a  child,  the  house  has  become  unclean 
for  twenty  days,  and  whoever  enters  it,  is  considered 
unclean  and  cannot  go  to  church,  nor  take  the;  Holy 
Sujjper.     Thus  are  the  Abyssiniaus  insnarcdwith  num- 


berless  forms  and  ceremonies — fetters  of  self-righteous- 
ness ;  lost  in  darkness^  and  separated  from  the  life  of 
God.  How  is  it  then  to  be  expected  that  they  should 
enlighten  the  surrounding  heathens.  May  the  Lord^ 
our  faithful  God,  soon  cause  His  blessed  light  to  shine 
upon  ^Ethiopia  and  the  numerous  tribes  of  heathens  of 
central  Africa,  that  His  holy  Name,  in  these  strong 
holds  of  darkness  and  death,  may  alone  be  praised  for 
ever  and  ever  ! 





Ankobar,   March    10,    181.2 — I    h.vd   for  some  time 


past  been  anxiously  looking  forward  to  a  journey  to  the 
sea  coast.  The  obstacles  which  my  dear  Brethren, 
Messrs.  MuUer  and  Muhleisen,  who  had  been  sent  out 
by  the  Committee  to  assist  the  Shoa  INIission,  had  met 
at  Tadjm'ra,  regarding  their  proceeding  to  Shoa,  had 
been  a  matter  of  sorrow  to  me,  and  called  forth  such 
endeavours  on  my  part  as  might  enable  them  to  prose- 
cute their  way  to  Shoa,  and  commence  their  Missionary 
labours  in  that  country.  A  speedy  journey  to  the  sea 
coast  was  considered  the  best  step  which  I  could  take 
to  facilitate  their  proceeding  to  Shoa ;  a  step  which  had 
been  recommended  to  me  by  the  Committee  in  a  Letter 
which  had  informed  me  of  the  departure  of  the  Breth- 
ren from  Europe. 

Desirable,  however,  as  this  step  would  have  been  on 
my  part,  yet  the  precarious  situation  of  our  Mission  in 
Shoa,  prevented  me  for  a  considerable  time  from  taking 
a  step  which  would  undoubtedly  prove  beneficial  to  my 
Brethren  on  the  coast.  Her  Majesty's  Embassy  arrived 
at  the  Court  of  Shoa  with  most  valuable  tokens  of  friend- 
ship to  the  King  of  Shoa.  The  principal  object  of  this 
Embassy  was  to  form  a  Treaty  of  amity  and  commerce 
with  his  Shoan  Majesty.  A  Treaty  of  this  nature  was 
of  course  of  great  importance  to  the  external  existence 
of  our  Mission,  because  if  once  concluded  by  the  Sove- 
reigns of  Great  Britain  and  Shoa,  it  woidd  include  a 
footing  for  British  subjects  in  the  dominions  of  Shoa. 
But  the  question  was,  whether  the  King,  although  he 
had  first  expressed  his  desire  to  join  in  friendship  with 

TREATY    WITH    THE    KING    OF    SHOA.  2G3 

Her  Majesty's  Government,  could  be  persuaded  to  sub- 
scribe to  tlie  terms  of  a  Treaty,  which  would  render  this 
footing  undoubted  and  uncontested.  So  long  as  his 
Shoan  jNIajesty's  sentiments  toward  Great  Britain  was 
not  known,  my  external  situation  was  also  doubtful  in 
many  respects  ;  and  had  his  Majesty  refused  to  enter 
into  any  connexion  with  the  British,  the  increase  of 
Missionary  labourers  in  Shoa  would  not  have  been  ad- 
visable. Thus  my  departure  for  the  coast  was  pro- 
tracted by  circumstances  which  it  was  not  in  my  power 
to  remove,  although  I  did  all  that  I  could  to  forward 
the  Government's  object  whenever  an  opportimity  was 
presented  to  me. 

This  state  of  uncertainty  with  regard  to  his  Shoan 
JNIajesty's  sentiments  toward  Great  Britain,  was  however 
removed  by  the  terms  of  a  Treaty  which  Her  Majesty's 
Representative,  Capt.  C.  W.  Harris,  concluded  with 
the  King  of  Shoa  on  the  16th  of  Nov.  1841,  after  he 
had  displayed  great  perseverance,  prudence,  and  firm- 
ness, in  overcoming  difficulties,  which  will  honour  him 
for  ever  in  the  annals  of  Shoa. 

After  this  Treaty  had  been  signed  and  sealed  by  his 
Shoan  iMajesty  and  Her  Majesty's  Ambassador  in  Shoa, 
many  douljtful  questions  with  regard  to  my  own  situa- 
tion, as  well  as  that  of  oiu-  Mission,  were  removed  ;  and 
my  desire  of  proceeding  to  the  coast  was  anew  excited 
in  my  mind,  as  the  increase  of  Europeans  in  the  country 
in  general,  and  of  Missionaries  in  particular,  could  not 
now  be  (jbjected  to  by  his  Shoan  Majesty,  after  having 


agreed  in  the  treaty,  "  that  British  subjects  should  not 
be  prevented  nor  molested  in  proceeding  to  Shoa,  in 
their  respective  business  in  the  country,  and  their  move- 
ments over  the  country  and  beyond." 

^"Miile  engaged  in  thinking  of  my  projected  journey 
to  the  coast,  I  received  the  intelligence,  that  our  Breth- 
ren had  made  a  second  attempt  to  penetrate  into  Shoa, 
but  with  the  same  disappointment  as  before.  At  the 
same  time,  I  received  news  of  my  own  private  matters 
in  Germany,  which  contributed  to  my  undertaking  the 
projected  journey.  But  as  the  arrangement  of  my  pri- 
vate matters  woidd  require  time  in  Em'ope,  and  as 
therefore  a  speedy  arrival  on  the  coast  was  not  indis- 
pensably necessary,  I  resolved  upon  taking  my  road  to 
the  coast  of  Massowah,  particularly  as  many  important 
objects  might  be  attained  by  so  doing.  As  a  matter  of 
great  importance  appeared  to  me,  the  personal  acquaint- 
ance of  the  new  Abuna,  the  head  of  the  Abyssinian 
Church.  I  was  also  desirous  of  taking  a  personal  view 
of  the  state  of  things  in  Tigre ;  many  favourable  re- 
ports regarding  our  Mission  there  having  been  carried 
to  Shoa.  And  lastly,  I  wished  to  know,  whether  the 
road  from  Shoa  to  Massowah  was  not  practicable,  in 
case  any  accident  should  happen  by  which  the  route  of 
Tadjurra  might  be  obstructed. 

]My  departure  from  Ankobar  was  appointed  to  take 
place  to-day.  Having  last  night  prepared  the  members 
of  my  establishment  for  my  approaching  departure,  by 
addressing   them  from   the   words  of  our   Saviour   in 


John  xiv. — and  having  recommended^  in  fervent  prayer, 
myself,  my  work,  and  all  my  future  proceedings,  to  the 
almighty  care  of  the  God  of  Israel — I  set  out  from 
Ankobar  about  four  o^clock  in  the  morning,  before  many 
people  could  assemble  to  trouble  me  w-ith  vain  lamenta- 
tions, and  superstitious  prophecies  as  to  the  issue  of  my 
long  journey.  But  although  I  endeavoured  to  leave 
the  capital  before  the  people  should  be  up  and  hear  of 
my  departm'e,  yet  a  considerable  body  of  men  pm'sued 
me  as  far  as  the  Chacka  Mountain,  the  fatiguing 
ascent  of  which  prevented  them  from  making  any 
further  attempt  to  overtake  me.  They  returned  to 
Ankobar  with  great  lamentations,  and  set  the  whole 
town  in  motion  with  their  weeping,  as  I  afterward  un- 
derstood from  people  who  took  the  trouble  to  follow  me 
to  Angollala. 

I  should  have  remained  to  receive  the  evidence  of  the 
public  and  general  feelings  of  esteem  which  the  inha- 
bitants of  Ankobar  seemed  to  express  toward  me,  had  I 
not  been  aware,  from  other  occasions  of  a  similar  nature, 
of  the  impossibility  of  speaking  a  word  of  edification 
to  the  excited  multitudes ;  and  had  I  not  been  afraid  of 
jealousy  rising  in  the  mind  of  the  influential  people 
of  Ankobar,  who  had  ne\er  before  seen  a  stranger  so 
nmch  honoured  by  their  countrymen.  Besides,  I  was 
well  aware  of  the  boisterous  manner  in  which  beggars 
of  all  kinds  would  have  annoyed  and  molested  me,  qua- 
lifying my  grateful  feelings  in  the  remembrance  of  a 
jjlace,  where  my  Heavenly  Father  had  given  me  so  many 



proofs  of  grace  and  mercy  during  a  residence  of  three 
yearSj  and  from  which  I  humbly  hope  and  beUeve  that 
the  seed  of  everlasting  life  will  be  carried  to  the  remote 
and  dark  regions  of  Central  Africa. 

Although  I  had  obtained  the  King's  permission  to 
leave  his  country,  yet  I  thought  it  prudent  and  proper 
to  take  leave  of  him  again,  and  once  more  to  express 
my  acknowledgment  of  the  kindness  which  I  had  ex- 
perienced from  his  Majesty  for  three  years.  As 
he  was  at  Augollala,  his  favourite  residence,  I  pro- 
ceeded to  that  place,  where  I  arrived  about  mid-day,  my 
people  with  the  luggage  being  unable  to  keep  pace  with 
me.  I  intended  to  take  with  me  as  many  copies  of  the 
iEthiopic  and  Amharic  Scriptures  as  I  could ;  but  to 
my  grief  I  found  that  my  beasts  of  bui'den  could  not 
carry  the  quantity  of  books  which  I  had  set  apart  for 
my  journey.  It  must  be  remarked,  that  camels  cannot 
be  used  in  this  part  of  Abyssinia,  as  the  mountainous 
nature  of  the  country,  and  its  cold  temperature,  does 
not  agree  with  an  animal  which  seems  to  have  been 
created  for  the  particular  benefit  of  plain  and  hot 

His  Shoan  Majesty  was  informed  of  my  arrival  at 
Angollala  by  my  Baldaraba  (Introducer)  Ayto  Habti, 
great  master  of  the  Tabiban  (mechanics),  and  royal 
physician  in  ordinary.  His  Majesty  sent  word  that  he 
was  very  busy  in  making  preparations  for  his  approach- 
ing   expedition    against  the  rebellious   Galla   tribe  of 


Yerrer ;  and  that  he  could  not  give  me  an  audience 
until  to-morrow. 

March  W,  184^2 — Early  this  morning;  my  Baldaraba 
made  his  appearance,  requestingmy  immediate  attendance 
at  the  palace.  I  found  his  Majesty  talking  with  his  offi- 
cers in  the  court-yard.  As  soon  as  he  observed  me,  he 
ordered  me  to  draw  near;  and  took  me  to  the  eminence 
from  whence  he  usually  gives  judgment,  and  frequently, 
also,  an  audience.  Having  inquired  after  my  health, 
he  repeated  several  times,  "  You  should  not  leave  me, 
my  father,  as  I  shall  have  no  adviser  when  you  are 
away.^'  I  answered,  that  the  reasons  which  induced 
me  to  leave  his  country  for  a  short  time  were  very 
urgent,  and  partly  intended  for  his  owti  benefit. — "Well, 
then,^'  he  said,  "  I  will  not  prevent  you  from  going ; 
but  I  '^ish  you  to  reflect  on  every  thing  that  you  want 
for  your  journey,  and  communicate  to  me  your  wants  ; 
because  I  ^^'ish  you  to  make  youi*  journey  as  agi'eeable 
and  short  as  possible." 

I  therefore  went  home,  in  order  to  reflect  on  what  I 
should  require  from  his  Majesty ;  but  I  had  no  sooner 
retm-ned  to  my  house,  than  A5i;o  Habti  appeared  again, 
and  informed  me  that  his  Majesty  had  taken  a  fancy  to 
my  beautiful  rifle  gun,  presented  to  me  by  Capt.  Haines; 
and  that  his  Majesty  had  ordered  him  to  express  his 
wish  that  1  would  leave  it  with  him  before  I  departed. 
I  replied,  that  I  had  formerly  given  several  handsome 
presents  to  his  Majesty,  and  could  not  therefore  give 
any  more ;  that  I  wanted  the  gun  for  myself  on  my 

N  2 


dangerous  journey ;  and,  besides,  I  could  not  part  with 
a  present  whicli  I  had  received  from  a  friend  whom   I 
valued  and  respected.     I  hoped  that  this  reply  would 
induce  his  Majesty  to   desist  from  his   desire  for  my 
rifle ;  but  far  from  giving  up  the  matter,  he  carried  it 
on  so  long,  that  I  became  tired  and  disgusted,   and 
parted  with  the  beautiful  weapon.     He  sent  me  a  dou- 
ble-barrel flint  gun,  but  so  miserably  made  that  I  would 
not  look  upon  the  messenger  who  brought  it.     This  he 
requested  me  to  accept   instead  of  the  rifle,  which,   if 
I  should  lose  on  the  road,  would  make   him  very  sorry. 
I  sent  word,  that   the   desire  of   his   Majesty  for  my 
rifle  had  made  me  very  sad ;  yea,  angry  with  him,  at 
the  moment  of  my  leaving  his   country ;  that   it  was  a 
bad  practice,  disgracing  his  name  in  my  countiy,  to 
deprive  strangers  of  the  very  property  which  they  con- 
sider most  valuable  ;  and  that  it  would  be  far  better  for  a 
stranger  not  to  bring  \Adth  him  any  article  of  vakie  to 
this  country,  as  the  people,   and  especially  the  king, 
would  immediately  deprive  him  of  it  by  means  of  daily 
increasing  petitions  of  the  most  annoying  and  unplea- 
sant kind. 

This  strong  language,  which  I  was  obhged  to  use, 
had  an  efi"ect,  though  only  of  a  temporary  nature.  He 
sent  another  messenger,  who  informed  me  that  the 
King  begged  me  for  Christ's  and  the  GospeFs  sake, 
not  to  mention  in  my  country  that  the  King  of  Shoa 
had  endeavoured  to  deprive  me  of  my  property ;  and 
that  he  had  only  advised  me  to  leave  the  gun  in  his 


hands^  lest  it  might  be  lost  on  the  road.  At  the  same 
time  the  messenger  hinted  to  me,  that  his  Majesty  had 
intended,  if  I  had  not  left  the  country,  to  invest  mc 
with  a  government.  This  grant  of  the  royal  favom-had 
been  thought  by  the  King  as  a  suitable  reward 
for  the  services  which  I  had  rendered  him  during  three 
years,  particularly  since  the  arrival  of  the  British  Em- 
bassy. I  answered,  that  if  his  jMajesty  intended  to 
honour  me  by  giving  me  a  government,  I  felt  very 
grateful;  but  that  I  did  not  desire  any  temporal  rank 
or  power  in  his  country,  my  only  object  being,  of  which 
he  was  well  aware,  to  do  good  to  himself  and  his  sub- 
jects, by  distributing  the  Word  of  God,  and  by  teach- 
ing them  the  true  and  right  way  to  their  temporal  and 
eternal  happiness.  I  also  said,  that  I  was  quite  con- 
tent with  the  external  marks  of  distinction  which  the 
King  had  abeady  given  me.  He  had  been  pleased  to 
give  me  the  Shoan  silver  sword,  which  placed  nie  in  the 
rank  of  Governors. 

I  had  frequent  opportunities  in  the  course  of  this 
day  of  distributing  many  copies  of  the  Amharic  and 
Ethiopia  Scriptures,  many  Ecclesiastics  and  other  great 
people  having  flocked  to  Angollala  to  join  the  King  on 
his  expedition  against  the  Yerrer  tribe  in  the  south  of 
Shoa.  I  also  again  met  the  messenger  of  the  Abuna 
to  the  King  of  Shoa,  who  was  about  returning  to  Gon- 
dar  with  an  answer  from  his  ]\Iajesty.  I  agreed  with 
the  messenger,  that  as  soon  as  I  should  have  taken  my 
final  leave  of  the  King,   I  would  hasten  my  march  and 


join  liim  on  the  road,  and  go  with  him  to  his  master  at 
Gondar,  for  whom  he  had  received  a  Letter  and  a 
few  valuable  presents  from  the  British  Ambassador,  as 
tokens  of  friendship  and  respect  to  the  greatest  Prelate 
of  Abyssinia.  I  had  also  given  him  a  copy  of  the 
iEthiopic  New  Testament,  with  a  letter,  which  I  had 
written  in  case  I  should  not  be  able  to  go  with  him. 
But  this  scheme  of  my  joining  the  man  was  afterward, 
from  many  causes,  entirely  frustrated. 

All  the  visitors  having  withdrawn,  I  passed  the  even- 
ing alone,  being  engaged  in  thoughts  and  reflections  on 
my  approaching  long  and  important  journey.  Know- 
ing that  I  was  going  to  countries  never  before  resorted 
to  by  Europeans,  and  thinking  that  unusual  dangers 
and  hardships  would  be  connected  with  such  a  journey, 
I  threw  myself  into  the  hands  of  Almighty  God,  who 
alone  could  bring  my  journey  to  a  happy  issue,  although 
1  was  provided  with  every  human  means  requisite  for 
such  a  hazardous  imdertaking. 

March  13,  1842 — After  day  break  a  signal  was  given 
for  the  departure  of  his  Majesty  on  his  expedition.  I 
therefore  had  no  time  to  lose  in  acquainting  his  Majesty 
with  my  wants,  and  to  take  final  leave  of  him.  On 
being  introduced  to  him,  he  repeatedly  expressed  his 
regret  at  my  leaving  him,  as  he  would  then  have  no 
one  to  advise  with  in  his  proceedings  with  the  British 
Embassy.  I  replied,  that  I  felt  grateful  for  the  confi- 
dence he  had  placed  in  me ;  and  that,  please  God,  I 
would  make  haste  on  my  journey,  so  as  to  be  able  to 

TO    THE   KING.  271 

return  in  October  or  November.  IVitli  regard  to 
the  British  Embassy,  I  acUised  him  to  give  decided 
marks  of  distinction  to  the  Representative  of  Her  Ma- 
jesty, and  to  listen  to  all  his  requests  and  counsels,  as 
they  would  prove  most  useful  and  beneficial  to  him. 

He  then  asked  about  my  wants  for  the  jom'ney.  I 
only  requested  a  good  strong  mule,  and  a  man  to  in- 
troduce me  to  the  Governors  as  far  as  his  influence  ex- 
tended on  the  road  to  Gondar.  Both  requests  were 
immediately  granted :  whereupon  he  begged  me  for  a 
blessing,  which  I  gave  him ;  praying  that  God  the 
Almighty  King  of  kings  would  so  dispose  his  heart, 
that  he  might  seek,  before  all,  the  welfare  of  his  own 
soul  and  the  souls  of  his  subjects ;  and  then,  that  He 
would  inchne  him  to  attempt  such  temporal  improve- 
ments as  might  become  subservient  to  the  eternal  hap- 
piness of  his  people.  When  I  had  ended,  his  Majesty 
said,  "  Amen  !  May  God  reward  you  !"  I  then  walked 
away,  and  he  set  off  on  his  expedition. 

Having  returned  to  my  house,  I  had  once  more  to 
take  leave  of  those  two  dear  friends  whose  kindness 
for  more  than  eight  months  had  rendered  my  stay  in 
Shoa  agreeable.  These  friends  were.  His  Excellency 
the  British  Ambassador,  Capt.  C.  W.  Harris,  and  his 
assistant  officer,  Capt.  D.  Graham.  I  had  taken  leave 
of  the  other  members  of  the  Embassy  at  Ankobar  the 
day  before  yesterday.  We  bid  farewell  with  mutual 
feelings  of  gratitude  for  the  kindness  and  assistance 
which  we  had  rendered  each  other  in  a  foreign  and 
uncivilized  country. 

272  DEBRA    BERHAN. 

Having  settled  every  thing  necessary,  I  set  out  from 
Angollala  about  ten  o'clock,  moving  ENE.  toward 
Debra  Berlian,  the  King's  third  favourite  place  of  re- 
sidence, about  seven  miles  distant  from  Angollala.  The 
road  led  over  a  level  country,  which  is  peculiar  to  the 
territories  of  the  Galla  tribes  in  the  south  of  Shoa,  as 
I  have  remarked  in  my  former  descriptions  of  the  Galla 
countries.  Small  hills  generally  rise  at  the  extremi- 
ties of  these  large  plains,  which  are  inhabited  by  im- 
mense herds  of  cattle ;  while  the  excellent  soil  of  the 
hills  is  used  for  cultivating  such  articles  as  are  requisite 
for  the  subsistence  of  man. 

Debra  Berhan  received  its  name  at  the  time  of  Zara- 
Jacob,  who  is  also  called  Constantine,  and  who  reigned 
over  Abyssinia  from  between  a.d.  1430  and  1460. 
When  persecuted  by  the  Adels,  he  took  flight  to  the 
large  forest  at  that  time  existing  on  the  place  where  the 
village  of  Debra  Berhan  is  now  built.  Being  at  a  loss 
concerning  an  outlet  for  his  escape,  he  saw  a  light 
from  heaven  showing  him  a  path ;  and  from  this  occur- 
ence he  called  the  place  Debra  Berhan  ;  i.  e.  "  Hill  of 

This  fabulous  derivation  of  the  name  of  Debra  Ber- 
han, which  was  given  me  by  a  native,  differs  some- 
what from  another  tradition  which  was  communicated 
to  me  by  Habta  INIichael,  his  Majesty's  principal 
scribe,  who  stated,  that  it  was  written  in  the  famous 
book  "  Taamera  Mariam" — Miracles  of  the  Holy 
Virgin — that,  at  the  time  of  Zara-Jacob,  a  blind  priest 


defended  the  doctrine  which  denies  the  same  worship 
to  the  Virgin  as  the  Son ;  that  the  party  of  the  priests 
who  worshipped  Mary  as  the  Son,  killed  the  blind 
priest ;  but  in  sign  of  his  innocency,  and  his  orthodox 
belief,  a  heavenly  light  had  been  seen  for  thirteen  days 
in  all  the  tents  of  the  Emperor  and  his  generals ;  and 
that  on  this  account  the  place  had  been  denominated 
"  Hill  of  Kght." 

As  I  would  not  halt  at  Debra  Berhan,  I  sent  my 
compliments  to  the  Alaca  of  the  Church  of  the  Holy 
Trinity.  I  also  sent  him  a  copy  of  the  iEthiopic  New 
Testament.  He  thankfully  acknowledged  the  receipt, 
and  wished  me  a  happy  journey.  He  is  one  of  the 
principal  leaders  of  the  party  in  Shoa  which  denies 
that  the  human  soul  has  any  knowledge  in  the  womb — 
that  the  Holy  Virgin  did  not  die  a  victim  of  mankind, 
and  should  not  be  worshipped  like  the  Son — and  that 
the  Son  does  not  praise  the  Father  in  His  state  of  ex- 
altation. These  are  at  present  the  principal  Shoan  con- 
troversies, which  ran  so  high,  that  his  Majesty  thought 
it  necessary  to  interfere,  and  decide  the  dispute  by  his 
royal  authority  in  favour  of  those  who  teach  the  con- 
trary, and  who  prefer  their  own  conceptions  to  the 
standard  of  the  Bible.  The  latter  having  got  the  as- 
cendancy in  the  Shoan  Church,  expelled  the  others  from 
their  ecclesiastical  functions.  These,  however,  applied 
to  the  new  Abuna,  Abba  Salama,  who  decided  in  their 
favour,  and  ordered  the  King  of  Shoa  to  restore  tliem 
to  their  office  3  but   the  King  has  not  yet   obeyed,   and 

N   5 

274  RIVER    BERESA. 

will  delay  the  matter  till  he  is  put  by  the  Abuna  to 
his  last  resource. 

Debra  Berhau,  as  I  have  already  stated,  is  one  of  the 
favourite  places  of  the  King  of  Shoa,  as  the  plain  land 
around  is  suitable  to  his  desire  of  daily  gallopping  his 
favourite  horses^  and  also  for  hunting,  although  there 
is  but  little  game  around.  The  place  answers  well,  too, 
for  the  number  of  horses,  mules,  and  cattle,  which 
always  follow  the  royal  encampments.  Debra  Berhan 
was  conquered  by  the  father  of  Sahela  Selassieh ;  but 
settled  and  secured  against  the  inroads  of  the  Gallas 
by  Menelek,  which  is  the  family  name  of  Sahela  Selas- 
sieh, this  being  his  Christian  name. 

Debra  Berhan  contains  a  few  hundred  houses,  with 
about  a  thousand  inhabitants.  In  the  south  of  the 
village  the  river  Beresa  runs  to  the  north-west,  forming 
a  terrace  of  high  cataracts,  at  a  distance  of  about  three 
miles  from  the  village.  These  cataracts  afford  one  of 
the  most  beautiful  sights  to  be  seen  in  Shoa.  The  river 
having  first  run  over  the  cataracts  is  carried  into  a  deep 
basin,  the  banks  of  which  are  extremely  steep  and  high. 
There  is  plenty  of  wood  around  this  basin.  The  wood 
is  royal  pri\ilege,  and  fifty  slaves  are  daily  employed  in 
providing  wood  for  his  Majesty  when  he  resides  at 
Debra  Berhan. 

About  one  o'clock  we  passed  a  place,  called  Bollo 
Workie,  where  one  of  the  most  celebrated  markets  is 
held  on  Saturday.  It  is  particularly  suitable  for  buying 
horses,  donkeys,  cattle,  and  grain,  these  articles  being 


supplied  in  abundance  by  the  Galla  tribes  in  the  neigh- 
bourhood of  Angollala.  But  money  in  coin  is  not 
much  used  in  this  market,  as  the  Gallas,  being  content 
with  barter,  or  at  least  salt-pieces,  which  pass  as  money, 
still  have  a  great  aversion  to  silver  money.  A  dollar 
at  Bollo  Workie  is  exchanged  for  sixteen  or  eighteen 
pieces  of  salt ;  and  consequently  for  a  few  pieces  less 
than  at  the  market  of  Alio  Amba  in  the  east  of  Anko- 
bar.  The  King  receives  considerable  sums  from  the 
duties  paid  on  articles  at  the  market  of  Bollo  Workie. 
Each  article  is  charged  according  to  its  value ;  as,  for 
instance,  he  who  buys  a  horse,  has  to  pay  half  a  piece 
of  salt  to  the  King. 

The  origin  of  the  name  of  Bollo  Workie  is  undoub- 
tedly from  the  Galla  language,  in  which  Bollo  means 
"hole  or  cave;"  and  Workie  "gold;"  conse- 
quently, "  cave  of  gold."  This  name  agrees  with  the 
general  belief  and  tradition  of  the  Shoans,  that  in  the 
caves  at  Bollo  Workie  immense  treasm-es  of  gold  have 
been  concealed  since  the  times  of  the  ancient  Emperors 
of  Abyssinia.  The  Shoans  also  say,  that  in  one  of  the 
caves  there  is  a  deep  lake,  which  nobody  will  venture  to 
cross,  although  the  gold  is  concealed  beyond  it.  In 
this  lake,  according  to  the  general  belief  of  the  Abys- 
sinians,  devils  reside.  One  day,  they  say,  a  splendid 
mule,  oiTiamented  with  gold,  and  attended  by  a  cat, 
came  out  from  the  cave ;  but  soon  disappeared.  I 
have  no  doubt  that  the  market  people,  who  are  fond  of 
relating  and  hearing   stories  for  their  amusement  on 

276        PASTURAGE   FOR   THE   KING's   CATTLE. 

their  long  journey,  have  invented  this  tale.  But  while 
the  common  people  have  invented  this  story,  the  priests, 
who,  as  may  be  expected,  are  not  behind  in  having 
their  share  in  all  cases  of  superstition,  discovered  a 
Tabot,  or  Holy  Ark,  in  the  cave.  It  frequently  hap- 
pens that  the  priests,  in  order  to  defend  a  favourite 
idea,  pretend  to  have  discovered  a  Holy  Ark  in  a  cave 
in  which  they  have  found  a  piece  of  parchment,  on 
which  the  Saint,  to  whom  the  Tabot  is  consecrated, 
has  written  that  such  or  such  a  doctrine  shall  be  ac- 
cepted or  cursed.  'The  Abyssinians  are  never  at  a  loss 
in  contriving  lies  when  it  suits  their  purpose. 

Bollo  Workie,  like  Debra  Berhan,  was  formerly  in 
possession  of  the  Gallas  ;  and  Tenna  Kallo,  the  Galla 
Chieftain  of  this  district,  is  not  yet  forgotten  by  the 
Shoans,  who  well  remember  the  number  of  their  fa- 
thers who  were  killed  by  Tenna  Kallo  near  Bollo  Wor- 
kie and  Debra  Berhan.  The  river  Beresa  was  at  the 
time  of  Sahela  Selassieh's  father  the  real  boundary, 
beyond  which  the  Shoans  durst  not  venture  to  go, 
without  running  the  danger  of  being  murdered  by  the 
Gallas,  although  most  of  the  tribes  near  the  Beresa 
river  paid  tribute  to  Shoa ;  but  the  settled  boundary 
was  the  Beresa,  as  is  now  the  river  Tchatsha  in  the 
south  of  xingollala. 

Bollo  Workie  is  one  of  the  King's  principal  pasturages 
for  a  part  of  his  numerous  cattle,  in  charge  of  herdmen 
which    are  called   Abellam,     from    the    Amharic    verb 


Abella — "  he  made  eat  up."  His  INIajesty  has  selected 
about  twenty  or  thirty  places  of  this  kind  in  his  king- 
dom. He  sends  to  these  places  all  the  cattle  which  he 
receives  as  tribute,  or  captm-es  on  his  expeditions 
against  the  Gallas.  Such  places  as  are  known  to 
me,  are — Bollo  Workie,  Kollo-Berat,  Sagalla,  Tello- 
agger,  Dembaro,  Tchcraro,  Gosh-meda,  Wof-washa, 
Tora-mesk,  Kamberrie,  Mutti,  Gogorre,  Sankisa, 
Enghcrma,  Dodotie,  Arab-ledj,  and  Saramba. 

About  three  o'clock  we  passed  a  rivulet  called  Gona- 
gonit,  which  rises  at  the  foot  of  the  mountain  "Wof- 
washa,  which  is  a  part  of  a  range  of  movmtains  run- 
ning from  south  and  south-east,  to  north  and 
north-east.  It  begins  in  Bulga,  and  -  runs  through 
the  east  of  Shoa,  Worra  Kallo,  Ambassel,  Yechoo, 
Lasta,  as  far  as  Semien.  From  the  point  where  we 
crossed  the  Gonagonit,  we  could  look  do^^^l  into  a 
basin  of  a  tremendous  depth,  like  that  which  I  have 
mentioned  near  Debra  Berhan.  The  Gonagonit  forms 
a  cataract  of  about  160  feet,  falling  into  this  basin, 
which  sends  its  water  to  the  river  Adabui,  and  then 
runs  to  the  Nile.  I  have  generally  observed  that 
the  rivulets  rising  in  the  east  of  the  Shoan  moun- 
tains form  a  high  cataract  at  a  certain  distance  from 
their  sources.  It  cannot  be  otherwise,  because  the  range 
of  mountains  on  which  these  rivulets  have  their  gene- 
ral and  principal  springs  is  abo\it  9000  or  10,000 
feet  above  the  sea ;  while  the  Nile,  in  the  west  of  Shoa, 
may  be  elevated  about  -1000  feet.     Now,  as  the  dis- 


tance  between  the  source  and  mouth  of  these  rivers 
is  only  about  180  miles,  it  is  clear  that  they  must 
have  a  sudden  fall  at  certain  points,  where  nature  has 
produced  other  interesting  appearances.  Then  you 
observe  from  the  point  of  the  cataract,  high  and  steep 
banks  of  the  river  for  a  considerable  distance  and 
extent.  It  is  a  striking  fact,  that  these  cataracts,  and 
this  deep  basin-like  course  of  the  rivers,  are  to  be 
observed  toward  Tegulet,  the  centre  of  Shoa,  where 
geology  might  be  led  to  interesting  inquiries  and 

Having  crossed  the  Gonagonit,  I  was  conducted  by 
my  people  to  a  place  where  they  said  that  the  ocean 
could  be  seen.  When  I  drew  near  this  curious  spot,  I 
was  not  a  little  struck  at  observing  a  chasm  of  the 
earth,  about  200  yards  in  length,  and  three  feet  in 
breadth.  The  depth  must  be  enormous,  as  I  could 
not  hear  the  noise  of  stones  which  I  threw  down.  It 
is  natural  that  the  Abyssinians  should  point  to  this 
place  as  the  residence  of  evil  spirits,  as  it  is  indeed 
a  curious  one ;  but  probably  there  is  more  truth  in 
the  report  which  states,  that  one  day  when  the  Amharas 
persecuted  the  Gallas,  they  being  unacquainted  ^^dth 
the  dangerous  localities,  fell  into  the  chasm  and 
perished  in  great  numbers.  I  believe  this  may  be  a 
fact,  as  the  spot  does  not  appear  on  its  surface  to  be 
particularly  dangerous;  so  that  you  might  approach 
without  any  apprehension  till  you  fell  into  the  depth 
between  the  rocks.     The  place  allows  a  small  entrance 


in  the  north ;  but  people  say  that  the  path  is  soon 
lost  iu  the  subteiTaneous  water.  Happily,  the  general 
road  is  a  little  distant  from  this  dangerous  spot,  or 
else  it  might  prove  fatal  to  many  people,  especially 
at  night.  The  place  is  called  Tegulet-Wat,  which 
means — the  devouring  depth  of  Tegidet. 

Soon  after  we  had  crossed  the  Gonagonit,  we  crossed 
another  rivulet  called  Logheita,  where  we  had  a  beau- 
tiful view  of  the  hill  on  which  Tegulet,  the  former 
capital,  was  built.  There  is  now  a  ^^llage  called 
Etteghe,  where  I  was  told,  there  is  such  a  distant 
view,  that  the  place  became  an  Abyssinian  proverb,  the 
people  saying  in  an  Amharic  rhyme :  "  Etteghe  Gondar 
taioo  Echeghue,"  which  means :  At  Etteghe  is  the 
Echeghue  seen  at  Gondar. 

It  has  already  been  mentioned,  that  the  nature  of 
the  countiy  around  Tcgulet,  which  is  also  the  name 
for  the  whole  district  or  province  around,  is  of  a  very 
particular  kind,  forming  numerous  toiTcnts,  with  steep 
and  high  banks,  and  allowing  only  a  few  accessible 
roads  for  men  and  animals  in  ascending  the  hills,  which 
are  separated  from  each  other  by  these  tremendous 
toirents.  Having  taken  in  view  this  natural  con- 
dition of  the  country,  we  can  understand  why  the 
continual  efforts  of  the  numerous  Galla  cavalry,  and 
those  of  the  Mahomedans  of  Adel,  were  always  dis- 
appointed in  taking  that  part  of  Shoa,  and  why  the 
Christian  name  could  not  be  exterminated  by  their 
ferocious  hordes. 


About  four  o'clock  we  arrived  at  a  village,  called 
Logheita,  where  we  intended  to  pass  the  night  in  the 
house  of  the  Checka-shum,  Governor  of  the  soil  or 
ground,  as  he  is  called  in  the  system  of  Shoan  adminis- 
tration. He  received  me  well,  having  frequently  heard 
of  me  from  people  of  Ankohar.  Checka-shum,  pro- 
perly speaking,  means  overseer  of  the  soil  or  ground. 
He  is  appointed  by  the  Misleni,  or  vice-Governor  of 
a  province,  and  he  must  collect  the  tribute  which  a 
village  owes  to  the  Governor  of  the  pro\dnce.  Under 
the  Checka-shum  is  the  Amba-llas,  who  merely  ex- 
ecutes the  orders  of  his  superior.  For  instance,  if  a 
great  stranger  is  quartered  in  the  village,  he  collects 
the  quantity  of  pro\'isions  from  the  villagers  at  the 
order  of  the  Checka-shum,  which  is  only  then  the 
case  if  the  stranger  is  accompanied  or  conducted  by 
a  royal  servant,  called  Afero.  If  you  have  such  a 
servant  with  you,  the  Governors  must  receive  you,  and 
provide  for  your  daily  wants.  Of  course,  the  advan- 
tage is  always  on  the  part  of  the  Checka-shum,  as  he 
can  order  such  a  quantity  of  provisions,  that  not  only 
the  stranger,  but  also  his  whole  household  vnll  be 
supported  for  many  days.  Besides,  he  always  expects 
a  present  from  the  stranger. 

Having  travelled  for  three  years  almost  over  the 
whole  kingdom  of  Shoa,  I  must  express  my  entire 
dissatisfaction  with  this  custom.  In  the*  first  place, 
it  exposes  you,  in  a  great  measure,  to  the  beggaries  of 
the   Superior  of  the   village,    who   will   endeavour  by 


some  means  or  other  to  obtain  from  you  as  large  a  pre- 
sent as  he  can ;  and,  in  the  second  place,  the  inhabi- 
tants, who  have  no  share  in  the  present,  will  become 
disaffected  toward  the  stranger,  who  eats  his  bread  at 
their  expense.  In  my  opinion,  it  would  be  better  if 
his  Majesty  ordered  his  Governors  to  assist  a  stranger 
only  in  providing  his  own  wants  at  the  usual  rate  of  the 
country,  because  there  is  no  advantage  for  the  tra- 
veller, as  he  must  give  presents  which  exceed  the  value 
of  what  the  villagers  have  given  him. 

The  Checka-shum  holds  his  situation  for  one  year 
only.  He  pays  no  tribute  during  that  time ;  but 
collects  only  the  tribute  of  his  village.  In  like  manner, 
he  is  exempted  from  contributing  in  the  second  year 
of  his  rest,  as  it  is  called ;  but  in  the  third  year  he 
must  pay  like  all  other  \dllager3.  The  inhabitants 
give  him  a  dinner  on  every  great  festival,  besides  which 
he  receives  his  share  on  all  occasions  of  great  display 
and  entertainments.  He  orders  the  people  to  plough, 
build,  gather  the  harvest,  &c.  He  pays  twenty  pieces 
of  rock-salt  (equal  to  one  dollar  in  Shoa)  to  the  Gover- 
nor who  appoints  him  at  the  rcqviest  and  choice  of 
tlie  villagers. 

The  village  of  Logheita — the  whole  district  around 
has  the  same  name — has  been  so  called  from  Logo,  a 
former  Chief  of  the  Gallas,  who  had  been  in  the  pos- 
session of  this  fertile  district,  till  Asfa-Woossen, 
grandfather  of  the  present  King,  had  conquered  and 
settled  it.     Sahela  Selassieh  has  granted  the  revenues 

283  MONASTERY    OF   ST.    ABBO. 

of  this  village  to  the  Alaca  Amda-Tzion,  who  is  the 
superior  of  the  convent  at  Meedak  (not  far  from 
Ankobar  to  the  south-west),  and  who  instructed  and 
guarded  one  of  the  royal  princes. 

In  the  neighbourhood  of  the  west  of  the  village  of 
Logheita  is  a  monastery,  consecrated  to  one  of  the 
most  celebrated  Abyssinian  Saints,  St.  Abbo,  whose 
anniversary  will  be  to-morrow.  This  cloister  was 
established  when  the  district  was  still  in  the  hands  of 
the  Gallas,  of  whom  many  were  converted  to  Chris- 
tianity by  the  friars  of  the  convent ;  but  this  conver- 
sion was  of  a  very  superficial  nature.  Tlie  Gallas  were 
circumcised,  baptized,  obliged  to  fast,  and  to  wear  a 
string  of  silk  around  their  necks  in  sign  of  separation 
from  Mahomedans  and  Pagans. 

March  13, 1842 — Before  starting  I  had  a  conversation 
with  the  people,  who  assembled  around  my  tent  imme- 
diately after  day-break,  on  the  principal  topics  of  the 
Holy  Scriptui'cs.  I  also  distributed  a  few  copies  of 
the  Amharic  and  iEthiopic  New  Testament  to  the 
priests  of  the  village,  and  to  the  monks  of  St.  Abbo. 
About  seven  o'clock  we  left  Logheita  in  the  direc- 
tion NNE.  I  could  not  refrain  from  looking  back 
once  more  on  the  fertile  district  of  Logheita,  this 
being  a  Bala-Maseno ;  i.  e.  a  country  which  can  be 
watered  by  channels  which  the  inhabitants  have  made 
in  their  fields  to  water  them  during  the  dry  season. 
Irrigation    is   not     uncommon    in  Abyssinia.      They 


of  course  increase  the  value  of  the  laud  with  its  pro- 

About  eight  o^clock  we  travelled  through  the  dis- 
trict Hoolat-Dech  (two  doors),  which  name  alludes  to 
the  two  gates  or  principal  ways  which  you  can  take  in 
going  to  Zalla-Dengai  and  the  provinces  beyond.  The 
district  of  Hoolat-Dech  is  very  rocky  and  hilly.  On 
the  left  of  our  road  was  Negarit-Bar,  a  small  lake  at 
the  foot  of  hills.  The  name  of  the  lake  is  taken 
from  the  Amharic  "  Negarit,"  which  signifies  a  drum, 
as  the  Shoans  superstitiously  believe  that  evil  spirits 
have  been  heard  beating  a  drum  in  this  lake.  A 
priest  of  a  neighbouring  village,  who  accompanied  me 
for  a  considerable  distance  on  the  road,  led  the  con- 
versation to  this  subject.  He  asserted  that  lakes  are 
the  general  assembling  places  of  evil  spirits.  I  said, 
that  he  was  not  right  according  to  the  Scriptures  in 
placing  evil  spirits  in  lakes,  as  hell  fire  was  stated 
as  the  place  of  devils  and  all  sinful  creatures.  Their 
residence,  I  said,  in  lakes  on  earth  would  afford  them 
a  considerable  degree  of  ease  and  rest  from  the  tor- 
ments which  God  in  His  justice  had  sent  upon  them  on 
account  of  their  transgressions — that  Mark  v.  13, 
on  which  passage  his  opinion  was  founded,  had  a  particu- 
lar purpose,  from  which  we  are  not  entitled  to  draw  the 
conclusion  that  unclean  spirits  reside  in  lakes — that 
unclean  spirits,  according  to  the  Scriptiircs,  have  only  two 
places  of  residence ;  namely,  in  hell  fire,  and  in  the  hu- 
man heart;  and  therefore,  instead  of  searchingaftcrtheevil 


spirits  in  lakes,  wc  should  do  better  if  we  inquired 
after  their  residence  in  the  very  centre  of  our  thoughts, 
words,  and  deeds — and  that  it  would  be  better  if  we  were 
to  draw  near  our  Saviour  in  humble  prayer  and  faith, 
and  beg  Him  to  cast  out  the  unclean  spirits  of  oui" 
lusts  and  worldly  desires,  lest  they  should  lead  us  to 
that  hell  fire  which  burns  from  all  eternity.  Finally, 
I  admonished  the  ignorant  priest  to  read  the  pure 
Word  of  God  contained  in  the  Old  and  New  Testament, 
to  imprint  it  on  his  mind  in  prayer  and  faith,  and  then 
to  teach  it  to  his  countrymen. 

About  nine  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Goodo- 
Berat,  which  rises  in  the  famous  range  of  mountains 
which  I  have  before  mentioned.  It  runs  to  the  river 
Adabui  in  the  west,  to  which  river  forty-four  rivulets 
are  said  to  pay  their  tribute  of  water.  But  this  is 
evidently  an  imitation  of  the  number  of  the  forty-four 
Churches  of  Gondar.  In  the  same  manner  the  Shoans 
say,  that  in  proceeding  from  the  coast  of  Massowah 
forty-four  rivers  must  be  crossed  before  you  reach  Shoa. 
If  we  count  every  rivulet,  I  should  think  that  this 
account  would  come  short  of  the  number  of  rivers. 
The  river  Goodo-Berat  has  its  name  from  a  powerful 
Galla  Chieftain,  who,  in  connexion  with  Amdich, 
Mei'kurri,  Woldab,  and  other  less  influential  Chiefs, 
had  taken  possession  of  the  countries  around,  after 
Gragne  had  desolated  this  territory. 

On  enquiring  about  what  the  people  knew  of  the 
origin  of  the  Gallas,  I  learned  that  three  sons  of   a 

ORIGIN   OF    THE   GALLAS.  285 

man,  whose  name  they  could  not  tell  mc,  had  given 
rise  to  all  the  Galla  tribes  around  Shoa.  One  of  these 
sons,  Karaioo,  took  possession  of  the  country  in  the 
east  of  the  before  mentioned  range  of  mountains  ;  and 
also  possessed  himself  of  Tarmabar,  a  principal  peak 
of  this  mountain  range.  Hence  the  descendants  of 
Karaioo,  who  were  then  divided  into  several  other 
tribes,  possessed  all  the  countries  in  the  east  and 
north-east  of  x\nkobar  as  far  as  the  territories  of  the 
Adels,  or  Danakils.  They  consequently  possessed  the 
lower  countries,  which  are  comprised  under  the  general 
name  of  Argobba,  in  the  east  of  Efat.  It  is  a  fact, 
that  to  this  day  a  tribe  called  Karaioo,  still  exists  in 
the  south-east  of  Ankobar.  Another  son,  called 
Toolom,  went  over  the  range  and  possessed  himself  of 
all  the  countries  in  the  west  to  the  river  Hawash  in 
the  south,  and  to  the  Nile  in  the  west.  The  third 
son,  called  Wollo,  conquered  the  countries  in  the  north 
of  Shoa,  and  became  the  general  Chief  of  the  seven 
houses  of  the  Wollo  Gallas,  of  whom  I  shall  speak  in 
the  course  of  my  journal. 

About  twelve  o'clock  we  passed  through  the  district 
called  Beshkatie ;  i.  e.  It  disgusts  me.  The  origin  of 
this  strange  name  is  stated  as  follows  : — A  Governor, 
called  Tofich,  brought  such  an  abundance  of  honey  as 
tribute  to  the  King  Asfa-Woossen,  grandfather  of 
Sahela  Sclassieh,  that  the  King  exclaimed,  "The 
abundance  of  honey  which  that  district  ])roduccs  dis- 
gusts mc,"  or  more  verbally,  "  stinks  before  me." 


The  road  of  Beshkatie  led  us  to  the  district  of 
Rodas,  which  received  its  name  from  one  of  the  eight 
sons  of  Ali,  a  Mahomedan,  who  took  possession  of  the 
country  around  at  the  time  of  Gragne,  in  whose  in- 
terest it  was  to  introduce  people  of  his  religion  into 
the  country.  When  Ali  died,  his  eight  sons,  of  whom 
Rodas,  Sadekas,  and  Jonas,  particularly  distinguished 
themselves,  possessed  the  district  till  they  were  all  killed 
by  the  intruding  Gallas,  who  availed  themselves  of  the 
desolation  which  Gragne  had  caused  in  Abyssinia ;  a 
circumstance  which  reminds  us  of  Joel  i.  4.  That 
ivhich  the  palmer  loorm  hath  left,  hath  the  locust 
eaten,  S^c. 

Oui-  road  then  led  us  to  Maskalie  Ghedam  which 
means,  "  My  cross  is  a  convent."  Though  the  monas- 
tery was  close  to  the  way  side,  yet  I  had  no  time  to 
halt  and  take  leave  of  Alaca  Woldab,  who  has 
been  a  friend  of  mine  for  some  time.  However,  I 
sent  him  a  copy  of  the  ^thiopic  New  Testament,  for 
which  he  had  expressed  a  desire  whenever  he  had  seen 
me  at  Ankobar.  He  is  one  of  those  Ecclesiastics  who 
use  the  Amharic  Bible  in  teaching  their  pupils.  Tlie 
reason  why  I  could  not  halt  was,  because  I  had  no 
time  to  lose,  as  I  wished  before  evening  to  reach  Zalla- 
Dengai,  where  the  Queen-Dowager  resides.  A  travel- 
ler in  Abyssinia  must  always  bear  in  mind,  that  he 
must  arrive  in  due  time  at  the  Governors  with  whom 
he  intends  to  pass  the  night,  in  order  that  the  requi- 
site preparations  may  be  made  before  night  fall.     An 


error  of  this  kind  is  always  blamed  by  the  people,  and 
it  puts  the  traveller,  as  well  as  his  host,  to  great  incon- 
veniences, as  the  villagers  not  being  aware  in  due  time 
of  the  arrival  of  a  stranger,  are  therefore  unprepared. 
In  general,  the  Abyssinians  have  a  dislike  against  all 
night-work,  as  they  go  early  to  bed,  in  order  to  get  up 
before  or  at  day -break. 

The  nearer  we  approached  Zalla-Dengai,  the  more 
the  large  and  plain  province  of  Mans  was  presented 
to  om-  view.  The  people  of  Mans,  of  whom  I  shall 
speak  more  fully  afterward,  have  the  character  of  being- 
brave,  daring,  and  ignorant — a  character  which  seems 
to  me  to  have  been  given  them  with  some  reason,  as 
I  shall  state  hereafter.  They  are  principally  engaged 
in  breeding  sheep,  the  colour  of  which  is  very 
dark ;  a  circumstance  which  shows  that  the  pro- 
vince of  ]\Ians  must  be  high  land,  as  the  black  hair 
protects  the  sheep  better  against  the  cold.  The  Man- 
sians  use  this  black  wool  for  weaving  cloth,  which 
they  call  Sekdat ;  and  it  must  be  remarked,  that  this 
kind  of  di'css  at  once  distinguishes  a  Mansian  from 
the  other  Shoans,  who  wear  clothes  woven  of  cotton, 
which  is  cultivated  in  large  quantities  in  the  lower 
countries,  and  which  is  generally  of  a  good  and  silky 

Upon  inquiring  after  the  boundaries  and  extent  of 
Mans,  I  had  the  satisfaction  of  being  led  to  a  result 
which  I  could  never  obtain  before,  although  I  had  for 
the  last  three  years  inquired  on  every  opportunity  about 


the  geographical  division  of  the  different  provinces  of 
the  kingdom  of  Shoa.  It  may  therefore  be  imagined 
how  much  I  was  dehghtcd  with  obtaining  information 
on  a  subject  which  had  puzzled  me  for  several  years, 
and  which  is  so  important  in  sketching  a  correct  map 
of  the  country.  I  will  state  what  I  have  learned  from 
good  authority. 

1.  The  most  southern  province  of  Shoa,  inhabited 
chiefly  by  Christians,  is  the  province  of  Menchar.  Its 
noi'thern  boundary  is  the  river  Kassam,  and  its  southern 
frontier  is  Mount  Bokan.  Menchar  is  on  the  way  to 
the  Hawash  in  the  south,  and  to  the  countries  of 
Gurague,  Cambat,  and  Sentshiro. 

2.  The  province  of  Bulga  (Bidga  and  Menchar 
together  were  formerly  called  Fatagar)  is  bordered,  on 
the  south,  by  the  river  Kassam ;  and  on  the  north  by 
the  river  Kabani,  which  runs  to  the  Adel  country  to- 
ward the  Hawash. 

3.  The  province  of  Efat  begins  with  the  northern 
banks  of  the  river  Kabani,  and  extends  as  far  as  the 
river  Robi,  which  rises  in  the  Tarmabar  range  of  moun- 
tains, and  runs  to  the  Adel  country. 

4.  In  the  north  of  the  river  Robi  begins  the  pro- 
vince of  Gheddem,  which  is  bounded  by  the  province 
of  Efrata  in  the  north.  Efrata  is  bordered  on  the 
north  by  the  river  Berkona,  which  separates  the  Shoan 
dominions  from  those  of  the  Mahomedan  ruler  of 
AVorra  Kallo  and  Argobba.  It  must  be  remarked,  that 
this  is  another  Argobba,  not  belonging  to  tJie  King  of 


Slioa.  The  name  "  Argobba ''  is  given  by  the  Adds 
to  all  the  lower  countries  where  cotton  is  cultivated. 
Thus  you  hear  of  an  Argobba  belonging  to  Sahela 
Selassieh,  and  another  belonging  to  the  ruler  of  Worra 
Kallo.  It  must  also  be  remarked,  that  the  Adels 
generally  call  the  King  of  Shoa  only  King  of  Efat,  as 
this  pro^^nce  is  bounded  by  their  own  country ;  while 
the  people  of  jSTorthern  Abyssinia  call  him  the  King  of 
Shoa,  this  being  nearer  to  them.  In  like  manner,  the 
Gallas  in  the  south  always  call  him  the  King  of  Efat, 
as  the  Shoan  power  undertook  its  first  military  opera- 
tions against  the  southern  tribes  by  starting  from  Efat ; 
and  as  in  fact  most  of  the  Shoan  forces  which  fight 
against  the  Gallas  are  composed  of  Efatian  soldiers. 
These  remarks  will  preserve  the  Geographer  from  con- 
founding what  is  so  clear,  if  he  has  compared  the 
different  reports  of  the  natives  of  the  country,  and  the 
countries  around. 

5.  The  pro\TLnce  of  Tegulet  has  its  boundary  from 
the  river  Beresa,  near  Debra  Berhan,  and  from  the 
river  Tchatcha,  near  Angollala,  and  extends  to  the  river 
j\Iofer  in  the  north.  This  province  forms  the  principal 
part  of  Shoa,  and  is  situated  exactly  in  the  centre  of 
the  whole  Shoan  kingdom. 

6.  The  province  of  Mans  begins  with  the  river 
Mofer  in  the  north  of  Tegulet,  and  extends  as  far  as 
the  river  Katchenee  in  the  north. 

7.  With  the  Katchenee  river  begins  the  province 
of  Geshe,  which  is  bounded  in  the  north  by  the   river 



Woait^  which  separates  the   Shoan  dominions  in  the 
north-west  from  the  different  Wollo  Galla  tribes. 

8.  Between  Shoa  Meda  and  the  river  Jamma  in  the 
south-west  is  the  province  of  Morat ;  and  between  the 
rivers  Jamma  and  Wonshit  is  the  province  of  ]\Iora- 
bietie  in  the  north-west. 

9.  Shoa  Meda  is  a  plain  or  level  country  of  con- 
siderable extent ;  but  it  is  possessed  by  tributary  pagan 
Gallas,  many  villages  of  whom  however  have  been 
lately  converted  to  Christianity  by  the  orders  of  the 
King  of  Shoa,  who  commanded  them  to  be  circum- 
cised, to  be  baptized,  to  fast,  to  wear  a  string  of 
silk  around  the  neck,  and  not  to  eat  with  Mahomedans 
or  Pagans. 

All  the  country  from  Shoa  to  the  H  awash  in  the 
south  is  inhabited  by  Pagan  Gallas,  of  whom  I  have 
given  a  description  in  my  former  journals.  They  are 
all  subjected  to  the  sway  of  Shoa.  The  Mahomedans, 
who  are  under  the  Government  of  Shoa,  reside  in  the 
eastern  parts  of  the  kingdom,  in  Argobba,  toward 
the  Adel  country. 

After  four  o'clock  we  arrived  at  Zalla-Dengai,  where 
Zenama-Work,  the  mother  of  Sahela  Selassieh,  resides. . 
Before  we  reached  the  place,  I  saw  on  the  road  a  hill, 
on  which  I  was  told  that  the  present  King  was  edu- 
cated and  guarded  by  the  Alaca  Woldab,  who  is  not  to 
be  confounded  with  the  same  name  mentioned  before. 
It  is  a  pretty  little  square  hill,  on  which  his  royal 
highness  had  a  beautiful  \iew  of  the  country  around. 


and  on  which  many  ideas  and  future  schemes  may  have 
been  raised  and  planned  in  his  mind. 

On  arriving  at  the  foot  of  the  hill  on  which  the 
houses  of  Zenama-Workj  the  Queen-Dowager,  are 
built,  we  were  stopt  a  few  minutes  and  asked  who  we 
were,  and  from  whence  we  had  come.  Having  given 
a  satisfactory  answer  to  these  questions,  we  were 
permitted  to  walk  up  the  hill,  when  the  gates  of  the 
outer  wall  were  immediately  opened.  Having  reached 
the  outside  of  the  court-yard,  I  was  ordered  by  the 
Dech-agafari — the  introducer  through  the  gates — to 
sit  dovra  on  a  red  skin  which  had  been  spread  out  be- 
fore me.  A  messenger  was  then  dispatched  with  my 
compliments  to  the  royal  lady,  who  as  soon  as  she  heard 
of  my  arrival,  sent  word  that  she  would  be  glad  to  sec 
the  man  of  whom  she  had  heard  much  for  several  years; 
but  that,  as  it  was  already  late,  she  could  not  see  me 
then,  but  would  call  me  to-morrow  morning.  I  was 
then  conducted  to  a  house,  which  I  was  to  occupy 
during  my  stay  at  Zalla-Dengai.  But  I  preferred  to 
pitch  my  tent  for  many  reasons.  Two  large  pitchers 
of  hydromel,  two  jars  of  beer,  a  sheep,  fowls,  eggs, 
bread,  a  jar  of  honey,  and  many  other  things  were  then 
presented  in  such  an  abundance,  that  I  was  obliged  to 
send  back  the  greater  part  of  them,  lest  my  })cople 
should  commit  any  excess  in  enjoying  the  hospitality  of 
our  hostess.  Servants  were  also  sent  and  ordered  to 
attend  and  provide  me  with  whatever  I  should  require. 

March  1 1, 18 12 — Having  expressed  my  wish  to  depart 
o  2 


early,  I  was  called  by  the  Queeu-Dowager  to  see  her, 
and  at  the  same  time  to  bid  her  farewell.  I  wore  my 
European  di'ess  and  the  silver  sword  which  her  royal 
son  had  given  me  with  the  request  to  wear  it  on  all 
occasions  of  state.  I  was  introduced  through  fom-  or 
five  gates,  till  the  Dech-agafari  at  last  conducted  me  to 
a  small  but  nice  looking  room,  in  which  the  old  lady 
was  sitting  on  a  bedstead  covered  wdth  a  carpet  of  dif- 
ferent coloui's.  A  great  number  of  female  servants, 
mostly  slave  girls,  stood  on  the  left  and  right  of  the 
lady ;  while  her  male  servants,  priests,  and  counsellors, 
stood  at  some  distance  from  her.  The  attendants  of 
both  sexes  were  well  dressed ;  and  when  I  entered  they 
talked  with  their  mistress  in  a  familiar  and  easy  manner. 
The  lady  wore  a  large  white  Abyssinian  dress,  with  very 
few  other  marks  of  distinction.  Though  about  sixty 
years  of  age,  she  still  appeared  young  and  lively;  and 
although  she  is,  except  her  royal  son,  the  most  influen- 
tial person  in  the  kingdom,  and  governs  nearly  the 
half  of  Shoa  in  a  very  independent  manner,  yet  she 
shows  less  of  the  stiffness  observable  in  other  Abys- 
sinian ladies  of  a  much  inferior  rank.  She  appears  to 
be  a  person  of  high  attainments,  in  the  Abyssinian 
manner,  and  quite  qualified  for  the  situation  which  she 
holds  in  the  Shoan  affaii's,  and  seems  to  deserve  the 
attachment  and  respect  which  her  subjects  as  well 
as  her  royal  son  himself  pay  to  her. 

Having  paid  my  respects  to  her,  I  presented  her  with 
a  few  presents,  consisting  of  a  coloured  shawl,  a  pair 


of  English  scissors,  a  looking-glass,  and  a  copy  of  the 
^thiopic  New  Testament  and  Amharic  Old  Testament. 
She  was  extremely  grateful,  and  several  times  repeated, 
"  May  God  reward  you  ! "  She  was  particularly  pleased 
with  the  Holy  Scriptures;  and  although  the  other 
things  attracted  her  attention,  yet  the  Word  of  God 
seemed  to  afford  her  the  greatest  satisfaction.  I  had 
heard  at  Ankobar  that  she  had  bought  many  of  the 
books  which  I  had  given  the  people,  and  that  she  had 
distributed  them  to  her  priests.  From  what  I  have 
seen,  this  report  may  be  quite  correct.  She  had 
several  times  intended  to  enter  a  nunneiy,  partly 
from  religious  motives,  and  partly  from  weariness  of 
her  temporal  business.  3Iay  she  find,  under  the  Divine 
assistance,  in  the  "Word  of  God,  the  true  way  to  her 
eternal  welfare  and  hai)piness  ! 

Having  accepted  my  little  presents,  she  expressed 
her  satisfaction  at  having  become  acquainted  with  the 
man  of  whom  she  had  heard  much  for  the  last  three 
years.  She  then  asked  why  I  was  leaving  the  country; 
whether  I  should  return  to  Shoa ;  and  whether  those 
gentlemen,  who  had  lately  brought  such  valuable  pre- 
sents to  her  son,  belonged  to  my  nation.  She  also 
asked,  by  what  means  my  countrjTnen  had  advanced  so 
far  in  manufacturing  the  most  wonderful  things.  I 
replied,  that  God  had  said  in  His  Word,  Them  that 
honour  me  I  will  honour ;  and  that  if  we  like  His  holy 
Word,  He  will  not  only  give  us  spiritual  and  eternal 
blessings  for  our  souls,  but  will  also  give  us  wisdom  and 

294         ORIGIN    OF    THE   NAME   ZALLA-DENGAI. 

understanding  m  temporal  affairs,  according  to  the 
promise  of  our  Saviour,  Matt.  vi.  33. 

She  then  resumed  the  matter  of  the  presents  which 
Her  Majesty  had  sent  to  the  King  of  Shoa.  She  ex- 
claimed more  than  once :  "  What  astonishing  things 
have  we  seen  in  the  time  of  Sahela  Selassieh  !  For- 
merly,  we  only  heard  of  these  things  and  of  your  White 
people;  but  now  we  have  seen  with  our  eyes  and  believe 
what  we  were  told.^^  I  said,  that  they  would  see  still 
more  astonishing  things  if  Sahela  Selassieh,  following 
the  example  of  the  enlightened  Sovereigns  of  the  White 
people,  would  go  on  in  improving  the  moral  and  tem- 
poral condition  of  his  subjects. 

Having  already  laid  claim  too  long  to  the  time  of  the 
royal  lady,  I  thought  it  proper  to  discontinue  the  con- 
versation. Thanking  her  for  the  attention  and  hospi- 
tality with  which  I  had  been  honoured  since  my  arrival, 
I  left  the  room,  when  she  wished  me  a  happy  journey, 
and  promised  to  send  one  of  her  servants  with  me,  to 
introduce  me  to  Ayto  Habta  Michael,  the  Governor  of 
Geshe,  on  the  northern  frontier  of  Shoa.  I  had  now 
been  in  the  zenith  of  honour,  happiness,  and  external 
abundance ;  but  on  leaving  Zalla-Dengai  I  had  to  con- 
tend with  many  difficulties  and  dangers,  as  will  be  seen 
in  the  course  of  my  journey. 

The  origin  of  the  name  Zalla-Dengai  is  reported  in 
the  following  manner. — Formerly  there  was  a  large  stone 
on  the  top  of  the  hill  where  Zenama-Work  resides.  Bad 
people  were  sitting  one  day  on  the   stone,  engaged  in 

THE   queen-dowager's    ESTABLISHMENT.     295 

telling  lies,  and  in  contmdng  tricks  against  their  fellow- 
creatui'es ;  when,  on  a  sudden,  the  stone  moved  and 
rolled  down  into  the  deep  torrent,  which  runs  in  the 
east  of  Zalla-Dengai  toward  the  river  Mofer.  The 
people  were  killed;  and  that  others  should  take  their 
example  for  a  warning,  the  place  was  called  Zalla-Dengai, 
which  means  verbally  "  the  jumping  stone."  My  former 
way  of  WTiting  Selat  Dengai  would  imply  the  meaning 
"  sharp  stone,"  and  must  therefore  be  corrected, 

I  felt  an  intense  coldness  at  Zalla-Dengai,  and  the 
lady  several  times  asked  me  whether  it  was  so  cold  in 
my  country.  The  whole  establishment  of  Zenama- 
Work  is  arranged  according  to  the  model  of  the  King, 
only  on  a  smaller  scale.  Her  house  is  surrounded  with 
several  walls,  and  you  have  to  walk  through  many  gates. 
In  the  centre  is  a  court-j^ard,  which  however  is  not  equal 
in  extent  to  that  at  Ankobar.  In  the  eastern  fi'ont  of 
this  com*t-yard  is  a  place  of  eminence,  where  the  lady 
gives  judgment  to  her  subjects,  as  Sahcla  Selassieh  does 
at  Ankobar.  Another  large  room  has  been  selected  as 
the  dining-room  for  her  governors  and  soldiers.  The 
superiority  of  her  son  consists  in  the  following. — Each 
subject  of  Zenama-Work  can  apply  to  the  King  for 
justice,  if  her  decision  does  not  give  satisfaction.  She 
appoints  her  own  governors ;  but  always  with  the  ratifi- 
cation or  approbation  of  his  Majesty.  She  never  un- 
dertakes an  expedition ;  but  she  is  bound  to  send  a 
contingent  to  the  royal  army.  She  must  always  keep 
her  son  in  good  humour,  by  sending  presents  from  time 

296         INFLUENCE    OF   THE    QUEEN-DOWAGER. 

to  time,  particularly  of  such  articles  as  please  him ;  in 
return  for  which  he  sends  her  other  pleasing  things. 
Zenama-Work  has  great  influence  with  her  son,  and 
she  has  sometimes  ventured  either  to  dissuade  him  from 
an  undertaking,  or  to  counteract  his  schemes,  without 
having  been  resented  by  the  despotic  Monarch.  She 
often  intercedes  with  him  for  persons  who  have  been 
disgi-aced  by  his  Majesty,  who  esteems  her  so  much, 
that  he  fi-equently  swears  by  her  name ;  and  when  he 
appears  before  her,  he  takes  off  his  cloth  to  the  loins, 
just  as  his  subjects  do  when  they  appear  in  his  presence. 
His  Majesty  is  well  aware  of  the  great  advantages 
afforded  to  him  by  the  female  government  and  influence 
of  his  mother.  She  is  a  native  of  the  province  of 
Mans,  and  is  the  daughter  of  one  of  the  former  inde- 
pendent rulers  of  that  countiy.  On  this  account,  the 
Mansians  are  more  attached  to  her  than  to  the  King 
himself,  whom  they  scarcely  know  and  acknowledge. 
The  Mansians  being  an  obstinate  set  of  people,  would 
cause  many  distm'bances  to  his  Majesty,  if  he  could 
not  govern  them  through  his  mother.  Besides,  he 
finds  it  convenient  to  throw  every  thing  on  his  mother, 
who  sometimes  dissuades  or  encom'ages  him  either  to 
leave  off  an  undertaking,  or  to  execute  a  scheme.  Fur- 
thermore, it  is  pecuhar  to  the  Abyssinian  character 
to  act  through  a  mediator  or  intercessor.  The 
greater  the  power  and  rank  of  the  person  is,  the 
greater  his  mediator  must  be.  I  have  frequently 
heard  in    Shoa,   that  the    people   compared   Zenama- 


Work,  the  Queen-Dowager,  with  the  Holy  Virgin, 
who  is  on  the  same  terms  with  Christ,  her  son, 
on  which  Zenama-Work  is  mth  her  son,  Sahela  Selas- 

The  village  of  Zalla-Dengai  is  not  very  large,  and 
probably  contains  only  the  thii-d  part  of  the  houses  and 
inhabitants  of  Ankobar.  The  hill  presents  an  exten- 
sive and  pretty  view  of  the  countries  around,  which 
are  well  cultivated,  particularly  with  barley ;  but  the 
north  and  east  of  Zalla-Dengai  presents  a  rocky  and 
fertile  appearance  for  several  miles. 

Having  retm-ned  from  my  visit  to  Zenama-Work,  I 
distributed  a  few  copies  of  Amharic  and  ^thiopic 
Scriptui-es,  and  about  eight  o'clock  a.m.  we  left  Zalla- 
Dengai,  We  descended  considerably  for  about  half  an 
horn-,  leaving  to  oui-  left  Koorra-Gadel,  which  is  an  ex- 
tremely steep  hill.  I  was  told  that  Sahela  Selassieh  had 
been  instructed  there  for  some  time  in  the  chiu'ch  of 
the  Holy  Trinity,  which  is  built  on  the  top  ;  and  hence 
his  Majesty  has  taken  the  habit  of  swearing  by  the 
Church  of  the  Holy  Trinity  in  Koorra-Gadel.  If  he 
has  once  sworn  by  that  place,  no  alteration  of  the  royal 
mind  can  be  expected  in  whatever  matter  it  may  be. 
To  the  east  we  had  the  hill  and  district  of  Wodera,  the 
produce  of  which  is  divided  between  the  King  and  his 
mothtr,  she  taking  the  wood,  which  is  very  rare  around 
Zalla-Dengai,  and  the  King  claiming  the  grass  places 
for  his  cattle.  Wodera  and  the  country  around  was 
formerly  in  the  hands  of  three  Galla  Chieftains;  viz. 

O  5 

398  THE   RIVER    MOFER. 

Hamte^  Berre^  and  HoolosfFe,  until  the  Efatian  Kings 
Ymmaha-Yasoos  and  Asfa-Woosseu  turned  them  out 
of  their  possessions.  Hamte  displayed  such  bravery  in 
war,  that  Asfa-Woosen  himself  respected  him. 

About  ten  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Mofer  on  its 
junction  with  a  torrent  called  Kaskash,  which  rises  at 
the  foot  of  Wof-Washa.  The  latter  is  the  name  of  a 
part  of  the  range  of  mountains  which  I  have  several 
times  mentioned.  The  water  of  the  river  Mofer  comes 
from  Gooasa,  which  is  a  part  of  the  Tarmabar  range. 
The  river  IMofer  runs  in  a  westerly  direction,  and  joins 
the  river  Jamma,  which  falls  into  the  Adabai,  and  this 
into  the  Nile.  The  Mofer  separates  the  provinces  of 
Tegulet  and  Mans,  as  above  stated.  It  is  about  twenty- 
five  feet  in  breadth  at  the  place  where  I  crossed  it.  Its 
banks  are  extremely  steep,  according  to  the  general 
nature  of  the  Abyssinian  rivers  and  rivulets.  It  carries 
water  to  the  Jamma  during  the  whole  year,  and  receives 
many  tributary  rivulets. 

Having  crossed  the  Mofer,  we  had  to  ascend  for  a  con- 
siderable time.  The  ascent  was  so  steep  and  rocky,  that 
we  were  compelled  to  unload  our  animals,  and  the  men 
carried  the  baggage  on  their  shoulders  for  some  distance. 
Having  reached  the  top,  we  saw  before  us  an  immense 
plain,  intersected  only  by  small  hills.  We  had  a  beau- 
tiful view  of  the  countries  which  we  had  traversed  the 
preceding  days.  But  we  found  the  Mansian  climate 
very  cold ;  and  the  wind  also  blew  strongly  from  the 
east.      Our   general   direction  was    south-south-west, 


sometimes  entii'ely  north.  The  cold  cHmate  of  Mans 
renders  the  black  cloth  made  of  wool  indispensably 

Mans  is  the  largest  pro\ince  of  the  Shoan  domini- 
ons ;  but  the  Mansians  endeavoiu*  by  all  means  to 
keep  up  their  independence  of  old.  They  pay,  how- 
ever, great  respect  to  the  Queen-Dowager,  who  consi- 
ders theii'  country  her  hereditary  government.  The 
Mansians  pay  very  little  tribute  to  the  Shoan  crown.  I 
was  told  that  ten  families  only  pay  the  tribute  of  one 
sheep  in  the  course  of  a  year.  The  principal  tribute 
which  is  required  from  Mans,  consists  in  providing 
Sekdat,  or  black  cloth,  which  I  have  mentioned 
before,  for  the  royal  wants.  His  ^lajesty  uses  this 
black  stuiF  for  his  tents,  or  for  charity  to  poor  people. 

INlans  was  entirely  independent  of  Shoa  at  the  time 
of  Ghera,  who  governed  Mans,  when  Negassi,  the  first 
Shoan  King,  made  himself  independent  of  the  Go- 
vernment of  Gondar.  The  son  of  Ghera  was  Kedami, 
who  had  a  son  called  Hiskias.  He  had  a  son  called 
Gole,  who  was  engaged  in  war  with  Abie,  the  King  of 
Efat.  Gole  was  defeated,  and  Mans  became  connected 
with  the  kingdom  of  Shoa.  The  daughter  of  Gole  was 
Wolansa,  the  mother  of  Zenama-Work,  who  is  the 
mother  of  the  present  King  of  Shoa.  Hence  the 
attachment  which  the  Mansians  entertain  toward  the 
Queen  Dowager. 

•  The  province  of  Mans  is  divided  into  three  parts  : 
Mamma,   Lalo,  and  Ghera.     Each   part   has   its   own 

300  CHx\RACTER    OF 

Governor ;  but  I  shall  speak  of  this  hereafter.  At 
present  I  will  only  mention  the  genealogies  of  those 
rulers  who  formerly  possessed  independent  provinces 
and  governments,  until  they  were  united  to  the  Shoan 

1.  Demetrios  was  the  ruler  of  the  province  of 
Morabietie.  He  was  succeeded  by  his  son  Woldoo, 
whose  son  was  Dechen.  At  the  time  of  Dechcn  the 
province  of  Morabietie  was  united  to  Shoa.  The 
daughter  of  Dechen  is  Besabesh,  the  present  head-wife 
or  queen. 

2.  Masamer  governed  the  province  of  Morat.  He 
was  succeeded  by  his  son  Esaias,  whose  son  was  Abisa. 
The  son  of  Abisa  was  Tzeddoo,  whose  son  was  Hailoo. 
At  his  time  Morat  was  conquered  by  Asfa-Woossen. 
Sahela  Selassieh  has  left  the  issue  of  these  little  kings 
in  the  possession  of  their  paternal  and  hereditary  go- 
vernment. He  was  content  A^dth  their  acknowledg- 
ment of  his  royal  superiority,  and  with  an  annual  tri- 
bute ;  but  his  Majesty  has  lately  abrogated  this  here- 
ditary system  in  Morat  in  consequence  of  a  fault  which 
Ay  to  Shunkor,  a  descendant  of  the  old  family,  had  com- 
mitted against  him.  Most  probably  the  judicious 
monarch  only  waits  for  an  opportunity  of  doing  away 
with  all  hereditary  governments  in  his  kingdom. 

3.  The  hereditary  Galla  Governors  in  Shoa  Meda 
are:  Ero;  Tooloo.his  son;  andWodach,  at  present  Ayto 
Organon,  who  is  in  great  favom*  with  his  IMajesty.  He 
turned  a  Christian  a  few  years  ago,  the  King  himself 

THE    MANSIANS.  301 

being  his  godfather,  as  is  usual  when   influential  Gallas 
adopt  Christianity. 

4.  In  the  province  of  Geshe  ruled  the  descendants 
of  Ausabie. 

5.  In  Gheddem  ruled  the  issue  of  Yelala  and  Boroo ; 
in  Anzokia,  the  children  of  Sarnie ;  and  in  Efrata  the 
children  of  Waldo  Gucbru.  Only  in  the  province  of 
Boolga  no  lineal  succession  was  kept  up,  nor  had  his 
Majesty  any  regard  for  the  issue  of  former  influential 
families  in  his  appointing  the  Governors  of  Bulga.  It 
is  considered  as  the  country  which  the  Efatian  Kings 
have  taken  with  their  shield  or  military  forces. 

The  Mansians  have  the  character  of  being  brave, 
quarrelsome,  inhospitable,  ignorant,  and  haughty. 
This  character  is  pretty  correct  and  true. 

With  regard  to  their  bravery,  I  cannot  judge  from 
my  own  experience ;  but  I  am  told,  that,  when  Ayto 
Medoko,  a  very  brave  Efatian  Governor,  had  raised  a 
rebellion  against  his  Majesty  about  five  years  ago,  and 
the  King  was  in  great  distress,  he  sent  a  message  to  the 
Mansians,  saying, — "  My  brothers,  my  relations,  come 
and  help  me,"  the  INIansians  appeared  in  great  num- 
bers and  decided  the  royal  victory  over  the  rebel.  But 
this  was  the  first  time  that  they  went  on  an  expedition 
with  the  King.  Those  who  go  annually  to  war  with 
his  Majesty  are  merely  volunteers,  and  are  not  numer- 

Concerning  the  quarrelsomeness  of  the  Mansians,  it 
must  be  stated,  that  as  no  strong  royal  hand  is  able  to 


govern  them^  every  trifle  causes  them  to  be  at  variance 
with  each  other.  A  little  affront^  or  a  small  matter 
that  happens  on  account  of  the  boundaries  of  their 
fields,  raises  such  animosities  between  them,  that  they 
draw  their  swords  and  kill  one  another.  These  continual 
contests  and  then-  self-interestedness,  prevent  them 
from  hvdng  together  in  one  village.  Each  individual, 
or  several  families  being  the  issue  of  a  great  man, 
build  their  houses,  wherever  they  find  convenient  for 
the  sake  of  their  property,  or  for  the  purpose  of  more 
easily  watching  their  fields.  On  this  account  therefore 
you  do  not  see  large  villages  in  Mans.  They  do  not 
fight  against  a  common  and  general  enemy,  but  only 
against  each  other  ;  and  therefore  they  say,  "  We  will 
not  fight  against  the  Gallas,  who  do  us  no  harm ;  but 
we  fight  among  ourselves."  On  this  account  they 
refuse  to  go  on  the  King's  annual  expeditions  against 
the  southern  Gallas.  It  has  fi'equently  happened,  that 
they  have  killed  their  own  governors,  or  that  they  have 
imprisoned  or  insulted  them,  if  they  ventured  to  restrain 
theii'  independence  and  spirit  of  liberty.  His  Majesty 
cares  little  for  this,  as  he  dare  not  ventm-e  to  in- 
crease their  dissatisfaction  with  him.  Occasionally  he 
bums  the  houses  of  the  most  obstinate  people ;  but 
this  will  not  always  answer.  In  short,  his  power  and 
influence  in  that  part  of  his  dominions  is  very  limited 
and  loose.  The  Mansians  openly  declare,  "  We  know 
little  about  Sahela  Selassieh."  Nobody  would  venture 
to  say  so  in  Efat.     His   Majesty   well   aware  of  his 



little  influence  in  ]Mans,  endeavours  to  cover  his  weak- 
nessj  by  saving  that  he  does  not  require  much  from 
the  JNIansians,  as  they  are  his  relations,  his  mother  being 
a  Mansian,  as  we  have  seen  above. 

AVith  respect  to  the  inhospitability  of  the  Mansians, 
I  can  judge  from  my  own  experience.  Although  I  had 
a  man  from  the  King,  and  another  from  Zenama-Work 
with  me ;  and  although  I  offered  money  and  pajTiient, 
yet  the  pettiest  Governor  of  a  hamlet  would  not  allow  me 
to  pass  the  night  in  his  house,  nor  pro\-ide  me  with 
what  I  wanted.  He  knew  that  I  had  royal  messengers 
with  me ;  but  he  would  not  Hsten  to  them,  when  they 
requested  provisions  in  the  name  of  the  King  and 

The  Mansians  are  very  ignorant,  and  on  this  account 
have  become  a  proverb  on  the  market-place  of  Bollo- 
Workie.  The  Gallas  say  :  "  ^lansie  our  Gashie ;"  that 
is  to  say,  the  'Nlansian  is  a  blind  buyer ;  he  does  not 
look  whether  the  salt-piece  is  good  or  bad;  whether  the 
bullock  which  he  purchases  is  useful  and  good  for  him 
or  not.  It  must  be  observed,  that  they  have  no  im- 
portant market-place  in  their  own  pro\T.nce,  as  their 
unprincipled  life  would  raise  bloody  quarrels  on  such 
opportunities;  and  therefore  they  must  go  to  the  markets 
of  Bollo-Workie  and  Geshe.  The  learned  Mansians  are 
chiefly  engaged  in  using  witchcraft,  and  are  therefore 
feared  wherever  they  go.  They  pretend  to  be  able  to 
charm  spirits  from  the  water.  They  say  that  the  Alaca 
of  the  evil  spirits  is  in  the  lake  Alobar,  which  is  in  Mans. 


These  and  many  other  things  show  that  the  Mansians 
must  be  an  ignorant  people;  and  that  the  other  Shoans^ 
who  call  them  cows  and  donkeys  on  account  of  their 
ignorance,  are  nearly  right,  if  they  themselves  would 
only  be  better  and  superior  in  knowledge  and  morality. 

About  three  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Goormengne, 
which  runs  to  the  Adabai  in  the  west ;  and  about  half- 
past  three  we  passed  the  river  Sanafil-asfach.  The 
meaning  of  this  strange  name,  which  only  the  Man- 
sians could  give,  is  verbally — He  caused  the  breeches 
to  be  destroyed. 

The  soil  of  Mans  is  chiefly  black,  and  principally 
produces  barley,  wheat,  peas,  hog's  beans,  &c.  Sheep 
are  in  abundance,  and  can  be  bought  for  two  or  three 
pieces  of  salt.  Cotton  and  pepper  cannot  be  cultivated 
in  Mans,  being  too  high  and  cold  a  country.  \Vlien  the 
eastern  winds  blow  over  the  country,  it  is  so  cold  that 
you  can  scarcely  believe  that  you  are  in  the  interior  of 
Africa.  Notmthstanding  this  cold  climate,  the  fea- 
tures of  the  Mansians  are  of  a  pretty  dark,  yea,  black 
colour.  In  fact,  every  thing  of  theirs  is  black,  as  their 
soil,  clothes,  sheep,  cattle,  and,  above  all,  their  quarrel- 
some mind.  They  have  a  great  aversion  to  the  white 
clothes  of  cotton,  of  which  the  other  Shoans  are  so 
fond.  They  use  white  clothes  only  as  a  covering  at 
night,  or  on  occasions  of  state.  \^Tien  a  Mansian 
dies,  his  white  clothes  are  claimed  by  the  priests,  who 
consider  themselves  the  legitimate  heirs  in  this  respect. 
As  wood  in  Mans  is  very  rare,  they  build  their  houses 


of  stones,  at  least  the  walls.  Tlie  interior  construction 
of  tbeir  houses  does  not  look  so  bad  as  one  would  sup- 
pose from  the  outside  appearance  of  the  building.  The 
outward  shape  of  their  houses  is  circular,  like  that  of 
the  houses  of  the  other  Shoans. 

After  four  o'clock  I  pitched  my  tent  in  a  "hamlet, 
called  Wokan,  in  the  court-yard  of  a  petty  Governor, 
of  whom  I  have  made  mention  above.  As  I  found  the 
people  so  ill  disposed  toward  travellers,  I  ordered  my 
senants  to  stand  sentiy  by  turns  during  the  night. 
But,  above  all,  I  bowed  my  knees  before  the  almighty 
Shepherd  of  Israel,  who  never  sleeps  nor  slumbers,  and 
implored  His  assistance,  protection,  and  blessing  upon 
my  journey. 

March  15,  1842 — The  priest  of  our  host  came  after 
day-break  to  beg  from  me  a  copy  of  the  iEthiopic  New 
Testament,  which  I  gave  him.  He  had  yesterday 
spoken  to  the  Governor  in  our  favoui*,  and  had  provided 
us  ^N^ith  a  few  provisions.  I  also  presented  to  him  a 
copy  of  the  Heidelberg  Catechism  in  Amharic.  As 
he  could  not  at  first  understand  what  sort  of  book  this 
was,  I  availed  myself  of  the  delay  of  our  departui'e — 
caused  by  the  intense  coldness — to  give  him  verbal  ex- 
planations. In  a  short  time  many  people  were  assembled 
around  us. 

We  left  Wokan  after  seven  o'clock,  and  about  half- 
past  seven  crossed  the  river  Rctmat,  which  is  about 
twelve  feet  in  breadth.  It  has  steep  banks,  and  our 
animals  could  only  cross  it  with  difficulty.     Its  source 


is  in  the  Gooasa  range  of  mountains  in  the  east.  It 
had  very  little  water  at  the  present  dry  season.  This 
river  separates  the  district  of  Mamma  from  that  of 
Lab,  on  which  we  had  now  entered.  The  western 
bomidary  of  the  district  Mamma  is  the  river  Adabai, 
and  the*  eastern  frontier  is  Kaot.  The  present  Gover- 
nor of  Mamma  is  Ayto  Gadeloo,  to  whom  the  King 
has  married  one  of  his  numerous  daughters.  The  dis- 
trict of  Lalo  is  bounded  in  the  north  by  the  river 
Aftanat,  in  the  west  by  the  province  of  Morabietie,  and 
on  the  east  by  Gheddem.  It  is  divided  into  Lalo  and 
Igam.  The  people  of  both  districts  are  in  perpetual 
feu.ds  with  each  other ;  and  last  year  in  an  engagement 
about  thirty  men  were  killed  on  both  sides.  Lalo 
is  not  so  plain  as  the  district  of  Mamma,  which  we 
traversed  yesterday.  Money  in  coin  is  but  little  known 
in  Mans,  as  the  IMansians  say,  "  We  do  not  heap  up 
dollars  as  the  Efatians  do:  we  heap  up  salt-pieces 
and  ploughs,  which  we  bmy."  The  more  a  man  has  of 
buried  plough-shares,  the  richer  he  appears  in  the  eyes 
of  his  coimtrymen.  The  Mansians  seldom  appear  with 
spears  on  the  road,  instead  of  which  they  use  big  sticks 
on  their  jom-ney  ;  and  with  these  they  beat  on  soundly, 
when  they  dispute  on  the  road. 

About  nine  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Igam,  which 
had  however  but  little  water  at  this  season.  I  was 
struck  at  observing  all  the  houses  built  at  the  foot  of 
steep  hills,  sm-rounding  the  hamlets  like  natural  walls. 
The  reason  of  this  must  be  the  coldness  of  the  climate 

BLACK   SHEEP    OF    THE   WOLLO   COUNTRY.      307 

and  their  perpetual  feuds.  Behind  these  fortifications 
of  hills  they  can  defend  themselves ;  and  besides,  they 
are  secured  against  the  blowing  of  cold  and  violent  winds. 

About  ten  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Aftanat,  to 
the  bed  of  which  we  had  to  descend  about  a  thou- 
sand feet.  The  breadth  of  the  river  was  about  fifteen 
feet.  It  carries  down  to  the  west  a  larger  quantity  of 
water  than  the  river  Igam  mentioned  above.  Having 
crossed  the  Aftanat  I  saw,  for  the  fii'st  time,  the  large 
sheep,  the  skin  of  which  is  called  Lovisa,  and  much 
valued  by  the  Abyssinians.  It  was  grazing  in  the  field 
with  other  sheep.  Its  black  hair  was  so  long  that  it 
almost  touched  the  ground.  This  kind  of  sheep  wants 
a  cold  climate,  and  will  never  live  in  lower  and  warmer 
regions.  Its  skin  is  sold  for  fifteen  or  twenty  pieces  of 
salt,  as  it  is  seldom  found,  and  much  demanded  by  war- 
riors. I  shall  speak  about  this  sheep  at  large,  when 
describing  the  country  of  the  AVollo  Gallas. 

About  eleven  o'clock  we  saw,  on  the  west  of  our 
route,  down  into  a  large  and  deep  basin,  in  which  the 
rivers  Igam  and  Aftanat  and  several  others  join  and 
form  one  river,  known  under  the  general  name  of 
Ghirid,  which  joins  the  river  Jamma,  near  the  village 
Kum  Dengai  in  Shoa  ]\Ieda.  The  ]\Iansians  take  re- 
fuge to  this  basin  when  they  are  attacked  by  a  prevail- 
ing enemy,  who  cannot  persecute  them  so  far,  as  there 
is  only  one  steep  descent,  which  they  can  easily 
defend  against  an  enemy. 

About  twelve  o'clock  we  passed  the  river  Hoolladcha, 


and  half  an  hour  afterward  the  river  Ghedambo^  which 
forms  the  boundary  between  the  district  of  Lalo  and 
Ghera.  The  country  from  the  river  Ghedambo  to 
Agancha  belongs  hereditarily  to  the  Queen-Dowager. 
Agancha  is  a  small  district  in  the  larger  district  of 
Ghera,  which  belongs  at  the  same  time  to  Sahela  Selas- 
sieh,  first,  on  account  of  his  mother  Zenama-Work; 
and,  secondly,  on  account  of  his  forefather  Negassi,  the 
first  Shoan  King,  whose  residence  was  in  Agancha, 
from  which  he  went  conquering  to  Tarmabar  and  fur- 
ther to  the  south-east  of  Efat,  to  Aramba  and  Ankobar. 

Having  crossed  the  river  Ghedambo,  we  had  a  good 
road  and  the  same  black  soil  as  yesterday.  Our  general 
direction  was  from  north-west-west  to  north-north-east. 
About  one  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Agancha,  from 
which  the  district  around  has  its  name.  It  is  a  tribu- 
tary river  to  the  Ghirid,  and  rises  in  the  mountain 
range  which  pours  out  its  water  over  the  whole  west 
of  Shoa. 

Many  people  followed  my  little  caravan  to  find  pro- 
tection, as  they  said,  in  my  company  on  their  road  to 
Gondar.  The  greater  part  of  them  were  going  to 
Gondar  to  receive  holy  orders  from  the  new  Abuna, 
who,  I  understood,  daily  ordains  about  a  thousand 
people.  The  candidates  are  obliged  to  be  able  to  read 
the  ^thiopic  Gospel,  and  to  sing  from  the  book  of 
Yared ;  and  then  the  Abuna  lays  his  hands  on  them. 
For  this  they  must  pay  him  one  or  two  pieces  of  salt. 
But   it  must  be  remarked,  that   nobody   can  receive 


priests'  orders,  until  his  beard  lias  begun  to  grow, 
which  is  considered  a  sign  that  the  candidate  is  be- 
tween eighteen  or  twenty-foui-  years  of  age,  as  the 
Abyssinians  seldom  know  their  age.  But  the  orders 
for  deaconship  will  be  given  at  any  time.  I  saw  bands 
of  boys,  being  six  or  eight  years  of  age. 

About  two  o'clock  wc  crossed  the  river  Shai,  which, 
I  was  told,  goes  through  the  famous  lake  Alobar,  in 
the  west  of  Mans.  Having  left  this  lake,  the  river  is 
called  Shimmas,  and  joins  the  river  Jamma,  which  I 
have  frequently  mentioned.  The  lake,  I  am  told,  is 
very  large,  being  about  a  day's  joui-ney  in  circumfer- 
ence. It  was  formerly  all  land,  until  the  Virgin  iNIary 
destroyed  it  hke  Sodom  and  Gomorrah.  The  tradition 
is,  that  the  Virgin  Mary  appeared  one  day  in  the  house 
of  a  rich  and  wealthy  man,  who  lived  in  one  of  the 
\-illages  built  on  the  spot  where  there  is  now  a  lake. 
]\lary,  addi'cssing  the  house-wife  of  the  rich  man,  said, 
"Give  me  some  grain  :  I  vdW  grind  flour  for  wages." 
The  lady  of  the  house  complied  with  ]\Iary's  request, 
and  gave  her  some  grain;  but  this,  in  a  miracidous 
manner,  instantly  became  meal.  The  Virgin  then 
wanted  her  wages ;  but  the  rich  man  refused,  saying, 
that  she  had  not  ground  the  meal.  Mary  brought  the 
matter  before  the  judges  of  the  country  ;  but  these  de- 
cided in  favour  of  the  rich  man.  At  last  the  Virgin 
applied  to  the  shepherds  of  the  place,  who  yielded  the 
question  to  her,  by  saying,  that  as  she  was  the  author 
and  beginner  of  grinding,  she   could  claim  her  wages 


by  right.    The  Virgin,  pleased  with  this  decision,  made 
the  regulation  that  shepherds  should  annually,  on  the 
festival  of  Debra-Tabor,  and  of  her  anniversary,  receive 
from  their  countrymen  large  quantities  of  Dabo — large 
cakes  of  white  Abyssinian  bread — as  they  had  done  her 
justice.  But  at  the  same  time  she  destroyed  the  villages, 
changing  them  into  a  lake  like  Sodom  and   Gomorrah, 
which  lake  is  called  Alobar,  and  is,  in  the  opinion  of 
the  Shoans,  the  dwelling  place  of  all  evil  spirits,  par- 
ticularly of   their  Alaca.      Therefore,    a   Shoan,   who 
wants  to  lay  claim  for  having  obtained  a  considerable 
degree  of  magical  knowledge  and  practice,  must  have 
gone  to   school  with  the  Alaca  of  the  spirits  in  lake 
Alobar  in  the  province  of  Mans.     But  the  fact  is,  that 
such  a  cunning  scholar  swims  several  times  in  diiferent 
directions  through  the  lake,  as  far  inwards  as  his  strength 
will  allow  him,  and  with  this  his  lessons  are  terminated. 
Henceforth  he  has  abundance  of  customers,  who  will 
pay  any  price  for  his  talismanic  writings  or  prayers. 
This  impostor  is   called  sometimes  by  persons  from  a 
considerable  distance  in  the  country,  who  put  confi- 
dence in  his  charms.     And  what  does  he  do  ?    He  asks 
every-body  at  some  distance  from  the  place,  where  he 
is  to  go ;  abovit  the  character,  features,  situation,  rela- 
tions and  connections  of  the  person  who  has  called  him. 
Of  course  he  then  appears  well  informed  of  the  circum- 
stances of  the  person  who  Mdshes  to  consult  him.     This 
deceived  person  is  astonished  at  the  wisdom  which  the 
impostor    displays  regarding   things    which    only   the 

THE    LAKE    ALOBAR.  311 

Alaca  of  lake  Alobar  can  have  communicated  to  the 
magician,  who  then  receives  bullocks,  mules,  sheep, 
salt  pieces,  dollars,  clothes,  &c.,  in  acknowledgment  of 
the  power  of  divination,  with  which  he  has  been  endowed 
by  the  gi'eat  lord  of  Alobar. 

About  four  o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Ghidaot.  The 
country  around  appears  to  be  volcanic,  the  hills  being 
quite  bare,  and  large  pieces  of  rocks  have  been  thrown 
down  and  scattered  over  the  country.  The  people 
pointed  out  a  steep  hill,  on  the  foot  of  which  a  Tzabale 
was  said  to  exist.  Tzabale  means  such  springs,  the 
water  of  which  has  been  blessed  by  an  Abyssinian 
saint,  and  will  therefore  cure  all  sorts  of  diseases,  even 
those  which  human  skill  is  unable  to  heal.  The  Tzabale 
near  the  river  Ghidaot,  is  ascribed  to  the  blessing  of  the 
Saint  Guebra  Manfos  Kedos,  at  whose  anniversary  this 
spring  is  considered  as  gifted  mth  a  particular  sanative 
power.  The  priests  prevent  the  people  from  using  the 
water  at  any  other  time,  except  at  the  anniversary  of 
Guebra  Manfos  Kedos.  It  cannot  be  questioned  that 
there  are  some  mineral  waters  in  Shoa,  which  have,  in 
some  cases,  produced  a  very  extraordinary  effect ;  but 
notwithstanding  they  must  be  governed  by  the  same 
physical  laws  which  we  find  in  the  mineral  wells  of  all 
other  countries. 

On  the  banks  of  the  river  Ghidaot  I  saw,  for  the  first 
time,  that  kind  of  yellow  thorn,  the  root  of  which  is 
used  in  manufacturing  yellow  cloth,  which  they 
call  Woiba,    and   which    is    worn  by    monks  and  by 


people  who  are  in  great  distress.  Instead  of  this  root, 
they  also  use  the  bark  of  a  tree,  called  Woiba.  The 
root  or  bark  is  boiled  in  hot  watei',  together  with  the 
thread,  which  is  then  exposed  to  the  sun. 

After  five  o'clock  we  arrived  in  the  village  of  Amad- 
Washa,  the  name  of  which  is  taken  from  the  soil,  which 
resembles  ashes.  The  Governor  is  under  the  special 
command  of  the  Queen-Dowager;  but  notwithstanding 
he  would  not  receive  us  at  first.  But  some  hard  words 
made  the  man  very  smooth  and  civil.  The  first  King 
of  Efat  is  reported  to  have  been  born  in  Amad-Washa. 
Faris,  the  King  of  Gondar,  who  resided  for  some  time 
at  Dair,  a  stronghold  in  the  neighbourhood  of  Amad- 
Washa,  had  a  daughter  of  the  name  Sanbalt,  who  was 
married  to  a  Governor,  by  whom  she  had  a  son  called 
Negassi.  This  was  the  first  Shoan  King,  who  governed 
first  the  district  of  Agaucha,  of  which  Amad-Washa 
was  the  capital  at  that  time.  Faris  retm'uedto  Gondar, 
while  Negassi  his  grandchild,  having  made  himself  in- 
dependent of  him,  prosecuted  other  schemes  by  taking 
from  the  Gallas  the  countries  of  Ajabar,  Tarmabar,  and 
the  places  around.  His  successors  increased  their 
dominions  in  the  same  way  of  conquest,  by  defeating 
and  expelling  the  Gallas,  and  by  uniting  other  Chris- 
tian provinces,  which  w^re  at  that  time  almost  indepen- 
dent of  Gondar.  Thus,  if  this  account  is  correct,  the 
descent  of  the  Shoan  Kings  from  the  royal  blood  of 
the  ancient  line  of  the  Abyssinian  Kings  is  incontesta- 
ble.      Certain  it  is,    that   Sahela   Selassieh  considers 


Agancha  his  hereditary  portion  on  account   of  his  an- 
cestor Negassi. 

March  \Q,  1842 — Before  starting,  I  distributed  a  few 
copies  of  the  Amharic  Scriptures  among  the  priests  of 
the  village.  They  accepted  them  with  many  thanks, 
and  made  no  objection  against  their  being  in  Amharic. 
On  a  strict  inquiry,  I  found  that  very  few  copies  of  our 
Amharic  Bibles  had  reached  these  distant  districts  of 
the  Shoan  realm ;  and  I  determined  to  send  a  supply 
hither,  on  my  return  to  Ankobar. 

About  seven  o'clock  we  started  from  Amad-Washa, 
accompanied  by  the  son  of  the  Governor.  He  showed 
me,  on  the  road,  the  Church  of  the  Four  Animals — Arrat 
Ensesa — an  appellation  which  alludes,  beyond  all  doubt, 
to  the  four  animals  of  Ezekiel  i.  About  nine  o'clock 
we  began  to  descend  into  a  defile,  amidst  the  greatest 
difficulties.  On  descending,  we  found  a  spring  of  very 
delicious  water.  AVhen  I  approached  to  refi'esh  myself, 
I  was  told  that  it  was  a  Tzabale,  or  holy  spring,  which 
you  can  only  enjoy  on  the  Anniversary  of  the  Saint 
who  has  blessed  the  water.  I  was  also  told,  that,  on 
this  account,  a  large  serpent  watched  in  the  inside  of 
the  spring,  and  bit  all  those  who  drank  of  the  water  at 
an  improper  time.  I  replied,  that  I  did  not  care  for 
any  contrivances  of  the  monks  or  priests  in  order  to 
mislead  the  ignorant,  and  took  a  good  draught  of  the 
water.  I  then  asked  the  frightened  bystanders  why 
the  serpent  had  not  bit  me.  They  had  nothing  more 
to  say,  than  that  the  serpent  would  not  bite  good  people. 



The  banks  of  this  defile  are  so  steep  and  high,  that 
the  natives  would  be  able,  by  throwing  stones  upon 
the  invaders,  to  check  a  whole  army.  I  can  now  con- 
ceive why  his  Majesty  has  so  little  fear  of  any  enemy 
approaching  from  the  north  of  his  territories.  As 
this  is  the  principal  pass  and  entrance  into  the  centre 
of  Shoa,  and  as  this  defile  is  almost  impassable,  at 
least  for  any  Abyssinian  army  in  the  present  state  of 
military  system,  the  King  has  really  nothing  to  fear 
so  long  as  the  Governor  of  Dair  is  attached  to  his 

Having  descended  about  3000  feet,  we  arrived  at 
the  bed  of  the  river  Katchenee,  which  separates  the 
province  of  Mans  from  that  of  Geshe.  This  river 
rises  near  Aiamsa  in  the  Annas  mountains,  in  the 
north-east  of  Shoa.  The  Katchenee  is  afterward 
called  Wonshit,  which  falls  into  the  Jamma,  that 
famous  river  so  frequently  mentioned.  The  whole 
bed  of  the  Katchenee,  from  one  bank  to  the  other,  is 
about  eighty  feet  in  breadth ;  but  the  real  bed  of  the 
stream  is  only  about  twenty-five  feet,  the  whole  bed 
being  only  full  during  the  rainy  season.  In  this  bed,  I 
found  the  Thermometer,  about  mid-day,  90°  Farenheit 
in  the  shade.  The  place  where  we  crossed  is  frequently 
endangered  by  the  Wollo  Gallas,  who  being  close  on 
the  opposite  side  of  the  river,  follow  its  bed  to  this 
passage,  where  they  plunder  travellers,  particularly  in 
the  evening.  The  Katchenee  is  joined  below  by  the 
rivers  Ketama  and  Woia,  which  come  from  the  north 

•  / 
ARRIVE   AT    DAIR.  \~  4,'^^  I.  "'         315 

of  Shoa.  The  junction  takes  places  in  the  north- 
west of  Dair,  of  which  I  shall  speak  presently. 

The  province  of  Geshe  was  formerly  in  the  hands 
of  an  independent  prince  of  the  name  of  Ausabie, 
who  was  taken  prisoner  by  Asfa-Woossen,  the  grand- 
father of  Sahela  Selassieh.  A  lady  of  the  name  of 
Wooshama  was  in  favoui-  with  Ausabie.  Asfa-Woossen 
knowing  this,  sent  her  valuable  presents,  in  order  that 
she  might  deliver  over  the  prince  treacherously.  She 
called  Ausabie  to  her,  captured  him,  and  sent  him  to 
Asfa-A^'^oossen,  who  immediately  took  possession  of  his 
capital  of  Dair  and  his  whole  territory.  Many  strong- 
places  have  thus  fallen  by  means  of  female  craft ;  and 
it  must  also  be  mentioned,  that  the  Shoan  power  has 
increased  by  female  assistance.  To  this  day  his  Shoan 
Majesty  marries  the  daughters  of  chiefs  whom  he  wants 
to  bring  over  to  his  side  by  means  of  family  bonds. 
Lately  he  went  so  far  as  to  solicit  a  marriage  with  one 
of  the  princesses  of  England;  but  of  course  this 
singular  idea  was  objected  to  by  Captain  Harris,  Her 
Majesty's  Representative  in  Shoa. 

About  three  o'clock  we  arrived  at  Dair,  the  seat  of 
the  Governor  of  the  frontier.  This  Governor  is  ordered 
to  be  vei-y  particular  in  admitting  strangers  to  the 
stronghold.  We  therefore  had  to  wait  some  time 
before  we  were  admitted  to  his  presence.  His  house 
is  built  on  the  top  of  a  hill,  which  forms  a  complete 
mass  of  rocks,  the  banks  of  which  resemble  perpen- 
dicular walls,   several  hundred  feet  in  height.     There 

P  2 

316        PLUNDERING   HABITS    OF    THE    GALLAS. 

is  only  one  way  which  leads  to  the  top  of  the  hill,  and 
this  is  attended  with  great  difficulties.  They  have  water 
on  this  hill,  and  are  able  to  plough  a  considerable  ex- 
tent of  field.  No  Abyssinian  force  is  able  to  conquer 
this  stronghold. 

A  number  of  people  going  to  Gondar  were  waiting 
for  my  arrival  in  Dair ;  but  they  were  immediately 
ordered  by  the  Governor  to  start,  lest  they  might 
trouble  me.  They  left  their  good  clothes  at  Dair,  and 
wore  rags  and  sheep-skins  over  their  bodies,  being 
apprehensive  of  the  Gallas,  who  plunder  almost  eveiy 
one  they  see  with  a  good  dress.  They  were  ordered  to 
go  through  the  territory  of  Abie,  a  Wollo  Galla  Chief- 
tain, with  whom  the  King  of  Shoa  has  been  at  enmity 
for  many  years.  Each  individual  must  pay  a  piece  of 
salt  to  this  Chieftain  as  passage  money.  This  is  the 
reason  why  he  allows  the  Shoan  subjects  to  pass 
through  his  country,  though  he  is  at  enmity  with  the 
King  of  Shoa.  The  road  to  Gondar  through  the 
territory  of  Abie  is  much  shorter ;  but  people  carrying 
valuable  property  can  never  take  this  route,  nor  will 
they  be  permitted  by  the  King  of  Shoa  to  expose 
themselves  to  the  plundering  Gallas  on  this  road.  TVTaen 
talking  with  the  King  about  my  road,  he  told  me  that 
Abie  would  plunder  and  perhaps  kill  me;  and  therefore 
he  would  send  me  through  the  territory  of  Adara  Bille, 
the  Chieftain  of  the  tribe  Lagga  Ghora,  with  whom  he 
was  in  friendship.     The  King,  as  well  as  myself,  did 


to  know  at  that  time,  that  this  so-called  friend  of  his 
Majesty  would  totally  plunder  me. 

March  \7,  1842 — Having  been  requested  by  Habta 
]\lichacl,  the  Governor  of  Dair,  to  rest  a  day  or  two 
with  him  before  I  left  the  Shoan  territory,  I  complied 
with  his  kind  wish.  In  the  coui'se  of  the  day  I  made 
preparations  for  my  joui-ney  through  the  AVollo  country, 
arranging  my  baggage  in  an  easier  and  better  manner. 
In  the  morning  I  was  visited  by  Alaca  Bebille,  who 
has  been  a  friend  of  mine  for  some  time,  and  who  was 
now  retm'ning  to  his  country,  the  island  Debra-Gagood- 
gooad,  in  the  lake  Haik.  He  promised  to  take  me  to 
the  lake  if  I  wished  to  go  there ;  but  I  declined,  as 
my  jom-ney  to  Gondar  would  be  delayed.  I  did  not 
know  then  that  Adara  Bille  would  plunder  me,  and 
that  necessity  would  compel  me  to  visit  this  lake.  In 
general  I  had  not  the  least  fear  of  being  robbed,  as  I 
was  strong  enough  to  repel  an  attack  of  robbers  who 
should  venture  to  enter  into  an  engagement  with  me  in 
the  open  field.  That  Adara  Bille  would  plunder  me  in 
his  house  by  means  of  an  artifice,  how  coidd  I  suppose 

I  called  upon  the  Governor  of  Dair  in  the  course  of 
the  day ;  but  as  he  was  hearing  causes,  I  could  not 
converse  much  with  him.  He  again  expressed  his 
thanks  for  the  Amharic  and  iEthiopic  books  which  I 
had  given  him  yesterday.  I  begged  him  to  give  me  a 
man  to  introduce  me  to  Adara  Bille,  the  Chieftain  of 
Lagga  Ghora,  as  the  servants  of  the  King  and  Zcnama- 

318  VISIT    TO    THE   GOVERNOR   OF    DAIR. 

Work  wanted  to  return  from  Dair.     He  promised  to 
give  whatever  I  should  request. 

Whenever  I  went  to  the  Governor's  house  on  the  top 
of  the  hill — my  tent  being  pitched  at  the  foot  of  it — I 
had  great  difficulty  in  finding  my  way  through  the 
numerous  guardians  of  the  stronghold.  They  have 
the  strictest  orders  from  the  King  to  stand  upon  their 
guard  with  unrelenting  punctuality.  I  understood 
from  good  authority  that  his  Majesty  bribes  the  watch- 
men, who  are  appointed  by  the  King  in  a  lineal  suc- 
cession of  their  families,  to  keep  a  sharp  eye  on  all  the 
proceedings  of  the  Governor  himself.  The  Governor 
therefore  must  be  on  the  best  terms  with  these  watch- 
men, and  he  must  overlook  much  rudeness  which  they 
commit  toward  strangers.  A  few  years  ago  these 
watchmen  successfully  contrived  to  dismiss  a  Governor 
whom  they  disliked,  by  insinuating  to  his  Majesty 
that  the  Governor  intended  to  declare  himself  indepen- 
dent^ and  to  join  the  party  of  his  Majesty's  enemies, 
in  order  to  obtain  his  objects. 



March  18j  1842 — I  left  Dair  about  eight  o'clock 
with  very  peculiar  feelings,  as  I  was  now  on  the  frontier 
of  Shoa,  and  a  long  and  dangerous  way  was  before 
me.  Descending  from  Dair  into  the  bed  of  the  river 
Waiat,  which  separates  the  Wollo  country  from  Slioa, 
I  deeply  sighed  for  the  assistance  of  Him  in  whose 
hands  are  also  a  savage-like  people.     On  reaching  the 


bed  of  the  river  we  took  au  easterly  direction^  following 
the  course  of  the  river.  The  Shoans  are  particularly 
afraid  of  the  place  where  we  crossed,  as  the  Wollo 
Gallas  frequently  descend  from  their  movintains,  and 
lurk  in  the  high  grass  of  the  passage  of  the  river. 
Only  a  fortnight  ago  there  were  fifteen  men  killed, 
when  the  Wollos  came  to  an  engagement  with  the 
Shoans  at  this  spot. 

We  had  scarcely  crossed  the  river,  when  the  Wollo 
Gallas  set  up  a  cry  on  their  hills  around,  most  probably 
believing  that  the  Shoans  had  come  to  make  an  attack 
on  their  country.  They  must  have  observed  our  large 
party  of  men  and  animals.  We  had  taken  the  greatest 
care  to  avoid  the  discharge  of  a  gun,  although  there 
was  game  in  abundance,  particularly  birds  which  I  had 
never  seen  before  in  Shoa.  We  drove  on  our  animals 
as  quick  as  possible,  in  order  to  leave  this  dangerous 
spot  behind  us.  We  were  fortunate  enough  to  reach 
the  district  Mesaraser  before  the  Wollos  of  Abie  had 
assembled  in  any  number.  About  four  o^clock  p.  m. 
we  reached  the  village  of  Golta,  where  the  petty  Go- 
vernor of  ]\Iesaraser  resides.  This  district  was  con- 
quered a  few  years  ago  by  the  brave  Ayto  Samma  Ne- 
goos,  then  Governor  of  Geshe.  The  poor  man  is  now 
in  prison  on  account  of  his  bravery.  He  killed  in  bat- 
tle the  son  of  Berroo  Loobo,  the  ruler  of  Woora  Kallo. 
His  Majesty  declared  that  he  had  not  ordered  his  Go- 
vernor to  fight  with  Berroo  Loobo,  and  put  him  into 
prison.     The  petty  Governor  of  Mesaraser  is  under  the 


Governor  of  Dair.  He  received  us  well^  providing  us 
with  every  tiling  we  wanted.  As  he  was  suffering  from 
an  inflammation  of  his  eyes,  he  requested  me  to  provide 
him  with  some  medicine,  which  I  readily  gave  him, 
applying  an  eye-wash  of  zinc. 

March  19,  1842 — The  servants  of  the  King  and  of 
Zenama-Work  took  leave  of  us  at  Golta.  I  entrusted 
them  with  letters  to  Capt.  Harris  and  his  Majesty,  in- 
forming them  how  far  I  had  advanced  on  my  journey  to 
Gondar.  I  started  from  Golta  after  seven  o'clock.  Our 
direction  was  north-north-east.  After  half  an  hour's 
walk  we  entirely  left  the  Shoan  territory,  and  entered 
the  territory  of  the  Wollo  Gallas.  The  boundary  of  the 
Shoaii  territory  is  marked  by  a  fence  and  ditch,  which 
separates  the  Shoan  dominions  from  the  frontier  of  the 
Wollo  Gallas.  This  ditch  secures  the  steep  road  against 
a  sudden  attack.  After  we  had  passed  this  fence  and 
ditch,  we  soon  came  to  the  first  Wollo  village,  which 
is  in  the  tribe  of  Lagga  Ghora,  the  first  Wollo  tribe 
through  which  our  road  led  us.  This  tribe  is  depen- 
dent on  the  Chieftain  Adara  Bille.  The  Governor  of 
the  village  came  out  to  see  us.  He  offered  us  some 
refreshments,  which  we  refused  to  accept,  saying,  that 
we  were  in  a  great  hurry  to  reach  Gatira,  the  capital  of 
Adara  Bille,  before  the  evening.  He  than  gave  me,  at 
ray  request,  a  servant  to  introduce  me  to  his  master 
Adara  Bille.  It  is  the  duty  of  Adamie-Dima — the 
name  of  the  Governor  of  the  village — to  receive 
•strangers,   and  to  conduct  them  either  to  Dair   or  to 

p  5 

323       ADARA   BILLE   DEPENDENT    ON   RAS   ALT. 

Adara  Bille,  if  they  come  from  Shoa.  In  the  west  of 
om-  road  was  the  river  Shotalmat^  which  separates  the 
tribe  Lagga  Ghora  from  that  of  Laggambo,  which  is 
governed  by  the  Chief  Amade.  The  first  district  of 
Adara  Bille's  territory^  in  which  we  had  entered,  is 
called  Shanghiet.  His  whole  territory  is  considerable, 
and  Adara  Bille  himself  has  the  name  of  a  brave 

Adara  Bille  is  nominally  dependent  on  Ras  Ali,  who 
claims  the  whole  country  of  the  Wollo  Gallas.  Adara 
was  the  name  of  his  father,  his  own  name  being  Bille ; 
but  it  is  customary  to  mention  the  name  of  the  father 
and  son  together. — Adara  Bille  is  commonly  called 
Abba-Daghet.  The  meaning  of  this  word  is,  "  father 
of  height."  lliis  name  has  reference  to  his  favom'ite 
horse,  which  has  the  same  name,  as  the  horse  carries 
the  Chief  victoriously  over  all  heights.  It  is  customary 
in  Abyssinia,  particularly  among  the  Gallas,  to  call  a 
Chieftain  according  to  the  name  of  his  horse.  After 
we  had  left  the  village  of  Adamie-Dima,  we  had  a 
pretty  plain  road.  Though  there  are  very  mountain- 
ous regions  among  the  Wollo  tribes,  yet  the  general 
character  of  their  country  is  plain  and  level.  But  it 
must  be  remarked,  that  the  country  of  the  Wollo 
Gallas  is  not  so  productive  as  that  of  the  Pagan  Gallas 
in  the  south  of  Shoa.  The  Wollo  country  is  high 
land,  and  therefore  the  temperature  is  different  from  that 
of  the  southern  tribes.  These  are  richer  in  horses,  cattle, 
and  grain. 


The  WoUo  Gallas  are  very  bigoted  aud  fanatic  Ma- 
homedans ;  but  the  GaUas  in  the  south  of  Shoa  are 
Pagans,  and  a  better  set  of  people.  The  Mahomedan 
rehgion  has  added  a  great  deal  to  the  depravity  of  the 
Wollo  Gallas  ;  their  corruptions  being  great  enough 
when  they  were  still  Pagans.  A  principal  trait  of  their 
character  is,  outward  friendliness  and  civility,  with 
which  they  cover  their  inward  artfulness.  They  them- 
selves confess  that  a  Wollo  Galla  is  to  be  compared 
with  a  hyseua.  Another  trait  of  their  character  is, 
pei-fidiousness  and  rapacity.  A  Wollo  Galla  will  seldom 
keep  his  word,  and  will  be  always  most  desirous  of 
getting  yoiu-  property.  Their  connexion  mth  Gondar, 
and  Northern  Abyssinia  in  general,  has  made  them  ac- 
quainted with  many  things  unknown  to  the  Southern 
Gallas;  but  the  acquaintance  of  a  savage  with  any 
valuable  article  \n\\  almost  always  lead  him  to  possess 
himself  of  that  article  by  any  means.  The  Wollo 
Gallas,  longing  particularly  for  property,  will  seldom 
kill  a  stranger ;  while  the  Southern  Gallas,  being  less 
fond  of  propei-ty,  would  kill  you,  if  you  had  not  been 
made  the  ]\Iogasa  or  favourite  of  a  Chieftain. 

The  Wollo  Gallas  are  much  engaged  in  saying  pray- 
ers and  in  blessing  the  country.  They  observe  a  cus- 
tom which  I  have  never  seen  with  other  Mahomedans. 
They  assemble  early  in  the  morning,  say  their  prayers, 
take  coffee,  and  Tohjid  (sort  of  tea),  and  smoke  tobacco. 
This  ceremony  is  called  Wodacha.  It  lasts  on  Wed- 
nesday   and  Friday  till  after  midday.     They    beheve 


that  they  receive  revelations  from  Allah  (God)  on  the 
Wodacha.  On  such  occasions  they  particularly  request 
from  the  Allah  that  he  will  give  them  cows,  clothes,  and 
whatever  they  want ;  that  their  Chief  may  find  gold 
and  silver ;  and  that  he  may  daily  become  stronger. 
I  once  heard  them  praying  in  this  manner. 

On  om*  way  this  afternoon  we  could  see  a  great  deal 
of  the  territory  of  Berroo  Loobo,  the  ruler  of  Worra 
Kallo.  His  territory  forms  almost  a  triangle  from 
south-west  to  north  and  north-east.  — The  highest 
mountains  of  the  Wollo  country  are  Sako,  Korkorra,  and 
Yoll.  We  had  all  these  mountains  on  our  left.  There 
is  perpetual  hail  on  Sako  ;  but  no  snow.  The  moun- 
tain is  very  high,  and  is  seen  from  a  great  distance. 
Korkorra  is  not  quite  so  high  as  Sako.  Ali  en- 
camped on  Korkorra  when  he  intended  to  conquer 
Shoa  ;  but  he  was  compelled  to  return,  having  been  beaten 
by  the  Wollo  Gallas,  who  fell  upon  his  troops  every 
where  with  their  light  cavalry.  Yoll  is  still  less  high 
than  Sako  and  Korkorra.  On  the  western  foot  of  Yoll 
is  Mecana- Selassie,  on  which  place  the  former  rulers 
of  Abyssinia  had  for  some  time  their  residence.  This 
was  probably  the  native  place  of  Abba  Gregorius,  whom 
Mr.  Ludolf  frequently  mentions  in  his  Works. 

The  Wollo  Gallas  are  divided  into  seven  houses  or 
tribes;  namely:  Worra  Himano,  under  the  present  Chief 
Iman  Liban ;  Worra  Kallo,  under  the  sway  of  Berroo 
Looboj  Lagga Ghora, under  Adara  Bille,orAbbaDaghet; 
Tehooladere,  under  Amade,   or  Abba-Shaol ;  Boranna, 

ARRIVE    AT    GATIRA.  325 

under  Abba  Damto;  Laggambo  and  Charso^  under 
Aniade  and  Daood-Berille ;  and  Lagga-Hidda,  under 

About  five  o'clock  p.  m.  we  arrived  at  Gatira,  the 
capital  of  Adara  Bille.  It  derives  its  name  from  the 
juniper-tree,  wliich  is  abundant  here,  and  which,  in  the 
Galla  language,  is  called  Gatira.  The  river  Gatu'a  runs 
fi'om  north-north-east  toward  south-west- west.  This 
river  is  afterward  called  Shotalmat,  when  it  separates 
the  tribe  Lagga  Ghora  from  Laggambo. 

Ha^dng  waited  for  a  considerable  time  for  an  answer 
from  Adara  Bille  regarding  our  reception,  we  were  at 
last  conducted  to  a  large  hoiise  not  far  from  the  one  in 
which  he  himself  resided.  They  would  not  allow  me 
to  pitch  my  tent,  as  I  had  always  done  before  on  the 
road.  As  it  began  to  rain  just  on  our  arrival,  I  did 
uot  insist  on  pitching  the  tent,  particularly  as  the 
rooms  of  the  house  which  was  given  me  were  good. 
We  were  then  honom'cd  vnth.  meat,  beer,  and  hydromel 
in  considerable  quantity.  A  servant  was  sent  by  Adara 
Bille  to  attend  and  to  inquire  what  more  we  wanted. 
Being  much  fatigued  from  the  journey,  I  was  about  to 
go  to  bed,  when  Adara  Bille  sent  for  me  immediately. 
Having  never  been  called  so  late  in  Efat  by  any  one, 
I  felt  uneasy  at  this  call  at  night :  however,  I 
got  up  and  went  to  the  Chieftain  with  three  of  my 
servants.  I  was  introduced  into  a  small  court-yard, 
and  then  into  a  large  room,  where  I  complimented  him. 
He  was  sitting  on    a  common    Abyssinian   bedstead. 


covered  with  an  old  carpet.  He  was  drinking  and 
talking  with  his  favom-ite  people^  with  whom  he  ap- 
peared to  be  more  familiar  than  I  have  observed  with 
great  people  in  Shoa.  His  dress  was  a  common  Galla 
dress — a  cloth  of  cotton — well  done  over  with  butter. 
When  I  approached  him,  he  made  a  bow,  as  if  I  had 
been  his  superior.  He  used  all  sorts  of  complimen- 
tary words,  and  was  in  general  so  friendly,  civil, 
and  familiar,  that  I  could  not  recollect  ever  having 
seen  a  Chieftain  like  Adara  Bille.  He  ordered  me 
to  take  a  place  on  the  ground  by  his  side,  and  began 
to  ask  many  questions.  He  asked  how  many  gims 
the  King  of  Shoa  had  received  from  the  English  ;  and 
then  asked  about  ships,  waggons,  manufacturing  of 
guns,  cloths,  &c.  His  condescension  made  me  as 
free  in  my  expressions  as  if  I  had  been  speaking  to 
an  equal  and  not  superior.  His  whole  appearance  gave 
me  the  best  impression.  Having  talked  with  him  a 
long  time,  I  expressed  the  deshe  of  my  going  home  ; 
whereupon  he  said,  "  Go  ;  you  have  now  delighted  me 
much  with  your  conversation." 

The  reception  I  had  met  with  from  Adara  Bille 
pleased  me  so  much  that  I  was  going  to  recommend 
him  to  the  attention  of  his  Excellency  Capt.  Harris, 
whether  he  might  not  be  inclined  to  offer  the  English 
friendship  to  Adara  Bille.  The  favom-able  idea  I  had 
received  of  him  was  increased  when  I  heard  that  three 
rulers  around  had  sought  for  his  friendship.  The  King 
of  Shoa  has  lately  given  him  forty-four  \allages  in  the 


province  of  Geshe,  from  which  Adara  Bille  receives  the 
annual  tribute,  for  the  purpose  of  securing  the  road 
between  Shoa  and  Gondar.  As  the  King  of  Shoa 
always  sends  his  messages  to  Gondar,  and  as  all  other 
routes  proved  dangerous,  he  thought  it  prudent  to  gain 
Adara  Bille  over  to  his  interest,  by  giving  him  such 
villages,  the  produce  of  which  is  most  valuable  to  him, 
being  the  Tef,  which  does  not  grow  in  his  own  territory. 
Berroo  Loobo,  the  ruler  of  Worra  Kallo,  in  the  east 
of  Adara  Bille's  tribe,  has  given  him  his  daughter 
Fatima  in  marriage,  and  several  villages  suitable  for 
the  cultivation  of  cotton,  which  cannot  be  cultivated 
in  Adara  Bille's  cold  country.  Berroo  Loobo  has  acted 
from  political  motives  in  granting  so  much  to  Adara 
Bille.  He  wished  that  this  Chief  should  not  join  the 
King  of  Shoa,  nor  the  western  Wollo  tribes  in  war 
expeditions  against  Worra  Kallo. 

Imam  Liban,  the  Chieftain  of  the  large  tribe  of 
Worra  Himano,  likewise  gave  a  few  villages  to  Adara 
Bille  to  keep  him  in  his  interest.  These  villages  are 
particularly  fit  for  the  cultivation  of  red  pepper  and 
wheat.  This  position  of  Adara  Bille  between  three 
influential  rulers,  might,  I  thought,  render  hmi  worthy 
of  the  British  friendship,  as  he  must  be  a  powerful 

The  territory  of  Adara  Billets  father  was  small ;  but 
his  warlike  son  has  considerably  extended  it.  Last 
year  the  western  Wollo  tribes  almost  expelled  Adara 
Bille  from  his  country ;  but  having  again   gathered  an 


army,  he  completely  defeated  the  invaders,  and  took 
possession  of  a  part  of  the  tribe  Laggambo. 

The  Wollo  Gallas  by  no  means  agree  together.  Only 
Adara  Bille  and  Berroo  Loobo,  the  Chiefs  of  the  two 
eastern  tribes,  join  together  in  friendship  ;  but  all  the 
others  are  quarrelling  among  themselves.  These  dis- 
sensions of  the  Wollos  are  extremely  subservient  to 
the  cause  of  Shoa  and  Gondar.  If  the  Wollo  tribes 
were  all  united,  the  rulers  of  Shoa  and  Gondar  woidd 
be  scarcely  able  to  repulse  them,  as  their  cavalry  is  very 
numerous  and  the  best  in  Abyssinia.  The  acknow- 
ledgment of  Ras  Ali  by  the  Wollos  is  only  nominal, 
and  a  mere  custom  of  old,  although  Adara  Bille, 
Berroo  Loobo,  and  Imam  Liban  assist  the  Has  with 

Ha\'ing  yesterday  acquainted  Adara  Bille  with  my 
intention  of  going  to  Gondar,  to  see  the  Has  and  the 
new  Abuna,  I  repaired  early  to  him,  thanked  him  for 
his  hospitality,  and  took  leave  of  him.  At  the  same 
time  I  presented  to  him  a  valuable  shawl  which  I  had 
received  from  Capt.  Harris,  and  some  trifles  of  my  own. 
He  was  extremely  grateful,  and  begged  me  to  make 
him  a  particular  friend,  as  he  would  do  all  that  he 
could  for  me.  He  gave  me,  at  my  request,  a  man  to 
introduce  me  to  Imam  Liban,  the  Chief  of  Worra 
Himano,  through  whose  territory  the  road  would  lead 
me  to  Gondar.  I  then  walked  off,  thinking  that  I  had 
gained  his  sincere  and  lasting  fi-iendship  ;  but  in  this  I 
was  miserably  disappointed,  as  will  be  seen  afterward. 


"We  set  out  from  Gatira  about  eiglit  o'clock,  accom- 
panied by  a  servant  of  Adara  Bille,  and  the  servant  of 
the  Governor  of  Geshe,  who  was  returning  to  his 
master.  Our  direction  was  precisely  north.  On  our  road 
we  could  see  more  and  more  of  Berroo  Loobo's  territory 
of  Worra  Kallo.  i\Iy  guide  pointed  out  two  hills,  on 
which  BeiToo's  two  capital  towns,  in  which  he  ge- 
nerally resides,  are  built  ;  viz.  Ajm-amba  and  Gof. 
Berroo's  country  appears  to  be  hilly  ;  but  at  the  same 
time  with  large  plains  between  the  hills.  I  saw  par- 
ticularly one  range  of  mountains,  which  is  e\ddcntly 
the  continuation  of  the  Efatian  range,  of  which  I  am 
obliged  to  make  frequent  mention.  Tlie  eastern  fron- 
tier of  Berroo  Loobo's  country  is  the  territory  of  the 
Adels  and  that  of  Imam  Faris,  who  resides  in  Gherfa. 
The  northern  part  of  Worra  Kallo  is  bounded  by  the 
tribe  Tehooladere  and  by  Worra  Himano.  The  south 
is  bordered  by  Shoa,  and  the  west  by  the  tribes  of 
Adara  Bille  and  Lagga  Ghora. 

Berroo  Loobo  is  not  on  good  terms  with  the  King 
of  Shoa,  since  the  Shoans,  under  A)i:o  Samma  Ncgoos, 
Governor  of  Geshe,  have  killed  his  eldest  son  Ali. 
Berroo  has  now  only  one  son  left,  whose  name  is 
Amade,  and  who  has  the  reputation  of  being  a  brave 
warrior.  About  nine  o'clock  we  passed  through  the 
districts  of  Googooftoo  and  Akale  in  the  territory  of 
Adara  Bille.  In  Akale  we  had  a  high  and  ])rctty  view 
backwards  of  the  provinces  of  Geshe  and  ]Mans.  I 
saw  this  morning  the  sheep  with  the  skin  called  Lovisa. 


The  country  of  the  Wollos  is  its  native  country.  I 
have  ah'eady  mentioned  that  this  kind  of  sheep  wants 
a  cold  cHmate,  like  that  of  the  Wollo  Gallas.  The 
people  take  the  greatest  care  of  this  animal,  feeding  it 
with  roasted  barley  and  other  food.  But  they  take 
care  lest  it  should  get  too  fat,  as  then  its  hair  would 
fall  off.  At  home  it  is  placed  on  a  bedstead  and  cleaned 
every  day  with  water.  Its  hair,  which  is  of  a  black 
colour,  is  a  cubit  or  more  in  length.  The  skin,  which 
is  of  a  good  quality,  is  sold  for  ten  or  twenty-five 
pieces  of  salt.  The  warriors,  who  principally  wear  this 
skin,  have  a  very  savage  appearance  in  it. 

Berroo  Loobo's  father  was  Wati,  a  Shocra  or  weaver, 
who  married  the  daughter  of  Endris,  the  Governor  of 
Gof.  Berroo  was  educated  at  the  court  of  Imam 
Liban,  the  son  of  Amade,  the  son  of  Has  Gooksa. 
Imam  Liban  had  a  son  who  was  also  called  Amade, 
and  who  was  the  father  of  the  present  young  Imam 
Liban,  of  whom  I  shall  speak  afterward.  When  the 
great  Liban  was  dead,  Berroo  fell  into  favour  with  his 
son  Amade,  who  made  him  Governor  of  Worra  Kallo. 
He  then  expelled  Ali,  the  son  of  Endris,  from  the 
country  of  Gof,  in  the  possession  of  which  he  was  con- 
firmed by  his  superior  and  friend  Amade.  Berroo  is 
almost  entirely  independent ;  but  he  prefers  to  keep  up 
some  show  of  dependence  on  the  descendants  of  Has 
Gooksa.  He  fi-equently  sends  his  contingent  to  the 
troops  of  Ras  Ali,  who  would  assist  him  if  the  King 
of  Shoa  or  the  other  Wollo  Gallas  should  become  too 


strong  for  him,  Amacle,  the  father  of  the  present 
Imam  Liban,  intended  to  attack  Shoa ;  but  his  subse- 
quent death  prevented  hira  from  executing  this  plan. 
Notwithstanding,  the  King  of  Shoa  having  heard  of 
his  death,  sent  100  dollars  for  a  Tescar  (festival  for 
priests  and  other  people  after  a  funeral),  and  sohcited 
the  friendship  of  his  son,  the  present  Imam  Liban. 

About  two  o^clock  we  arrived  in  the  district  Negassi 
Datch,  where  we  went  to  the  house  of  Sidi  Musie,  a 
Governor  of  Adara  Bille.  As  he  was  not  at  home  on 
om'  arrival,  wc  did  not  ventm*e  to  quarter  om-selves  in 
his  house ;  but  I  pitched  my  tent  as  I  was  accustomed 
to  do.  When  he  came,  I  complimented  him,  and  re- 
quested him  to  assist  us  as  long  as  we  should  reside 
here ;  but  having  gazed  at  me  for  a  few  moments,  he 
went  into  his  house,  -without  doing  or  promising  to 
do  any  thing  for  us.  He  then  came  out  again,  sat 
down  in  my  tent,  and  asked  what  I  had  in  my 
boxes.  I  said,  "  You  are  not  ordered  by  Adara  Bille, 
your  master,  to  inquire  after  the  contents  of  my  boxes; 
but  that  you  should  assist  and  make  me  comfortable." 
He  would  not  however  do  anything  for  us  till  I  gave 
him  a  razor  and  some  other  trifles.  We  could  not  buy 
any  thing  in  the  neighbourhood,  as  the  villages  were 
far  off,  and  as  I  did  not  like  that  my  servants  should  be 
scattered  abroad  in  case  of  any  serious  occurrence  or 
occasion  for  self-defence. 

Wc  had  a  very  distant  view  from  Negassi  Datch. 
We  saw  from  hence  the  high  mountain  Anxbassel,   be- 


tween  Tehooladere  and  Yechoo.  The  stronghold  of 
Ambassel  was  for  a  long  time  in  the  hands  of  Gove- 
nors  who  ruled  by  succession ;  but  the  son  of  one  of 
these  Governors  fell  in  love  with  a  woman  residing 
below  in  the  plain.  The  father  having  consented  to 
his  son's  marriage,  arranged  the  solemnities,  which  were 
to  be  celebrated  in  the  plain  below.  All  the  people  of 
the  fortress,  except  the  old  father,  went  down ;  but  the 
father  of  the  bride  killed  them  all.  He  then  went  up 
to  the  stronghold,  killed  the  old  Governor,  and  took 
possession  of  the  mount  for  himself  and  his  descen- 
dants. The  present  Governor  of  Ambassel  is  Ali 
Boroo,  a  Mahomedan.  I  have  already  stated  that 
many  strong  places  in  Abyssinia  have  been  treacherously 
delivered  by  female  artfulness. 

March  21, 1842 — As  Sidi  Musie,  our  host,  had  from 
the  very  beginning  of  our  stay  withhim,  given  undoubted 
signs  of  suspicion,  I  had  given  orders  to  my  people  to 
watch  by  turns  dm-ing  the  night.  Sidi  Musie  always 
wanted  to  know  what  was  in  the  boxes,  and  had  declared 
that  we  should  sleep  free  from  all  cares  and  apprehen- 
sions, as  he  and  his  people  would  come  to  my  tent  and 
watch  the  whole  night.  As  he  repeated  from  time  to 
time  his  desire  of  watching,  I  positively  refused,  say- 
ing, that  we  would  watch  ourselves ;  and  protect  our  own 
property  against  any  attack  that  might  be  made  upon 
us  during  the  night.  As  he  doubted  whether  we  could 
defend  ourselves,  I  showed  him  the  use  of  om'  guns, 
which  frightened  him  so  much  that  he  would  not  come 


near  us  again.  About  midnight  my  watchman  observed 
a  great  disturbance  in  the  house  of  the  Governor.  His 
people  went  around  my  tent  from  time  to  time  in  order 
to  ascertain  whether  we  were  asleep  or  not.  They  always 
pretended;  when  they  were  asked  by  the  sentry,  that 
they  had  some  business  in  the  jungle.  We  got  up  in 
an  instant  with  om*  fire-arms.  The  whole  proceeding  of 
this  people  and  of  the  Governor  convinced  me  that  they 
would  certainly  have  plundered  us  if  they  had  not  been 
in  fear  of  our  weapons,  and  if  we  had  not  watched  the 
whole  night.  The  servant  of  Adara  Billc  had  left  us 
and  slept  in  the  house  of  the  Governor,  with  whom  he 
never  exerted  himself  in  our  favour.  INIost  likely  he  in- 
tended to  have  a  share  in  oui*  property,  which  they  had 
schemed  to  plunder. 

We  left  Negassi  Datch  with  sun  rise.  Upon  starting 
we  were  suiTOunded  by  the  Governor's  servants,  who 
demanded  a  present  with  great  noise,  as  we  had  been 
in  the  house  of  a  great  king.  I  replied,  "  Your  master 
is  a  servant  of  Adara  Bille,  and  no  king,  as  you  say  : 
besides,  you  have  done  nothing  to  deserve  a  reward  on 
my  part.  1  have  given  a  present  to  your  master,  and 
he  has  done  veiy  little  for  me."  This  answer  so  en- 
raged them,  that  it  was  evident  they  would  have  plun- 
dered us  on  the  spot,  if  they  had  not  been  afraid  of 
exposing  themselves  to  the  effect  of  our  small  and  large 
shots,  with  which  they  had  seen  us  loading  our  guns. 
Besides,  they  were  so  afraid  of  the  bayonets  and  the 
muskets  which  I  had  received   from  his  Excellency  the 


Ambassador^  that  they  would  not  even  touch  them  for 
fear  of  being  poisoned.  The  report  had  been  spread  in 
Shoa  and  around,  that  the  EngUsh  bayonets  are  poisoned 
like  arrows.     Our  direction  was  north-west-west. 

About  eight  o'clock  we  left  the  territory  of  Adara 
Bille,  and  entered  the  territory  of  the  tribe  Charso, 
which  is  dependent  on  the  Chieftain  of  Laggambo. 
The  Governor  of  Charso  is  Sadetanka,  who  is  well  known 
from  his  plundering  those  merchants  who  venture  to  go 
through  his  country.  As  his  capital,  Manta-Wodel, 
was  close  to  the  road,  we  made  all  possible  haste  to 
pass  by  this  dangerous  spot.  But  we  afterward  fell 
in  with  one  of  his  Governors^  Ensenne,  as  I  shall  show 
in  the  course  of  this  day. 

I  must  confess  that  I  seldom  felt  my  mind  so  un- 
easy as  on  the  road  this  day,  and  my  heart  was,  like 
Moses  of  old,  crying  in  secret  to  Him,  who  is  the  leader 
and  warden  of  his  distressed  Israel.  It  is  true,  I  had 
all  the  materials  with  which  to  make  an  honourable 
defence;  but  as  a  messenger  of  peace,  I  could  scarcely 
make  use  of  my  weapons  against  the  life  of  my  fellow- 
creatures,  though  I  am  convinced  that  every  body  is 
allowed  to  make  his  self-defence  in  a  proper  way.  I 
therefore  begged  the  Lord  not  to  lead  me  into  tempta- 
tion for  the  sake  of  His  Holy  Name.  You  can  scarcely 
conceive  how  precarious  my  situation  was.  I  shall 
never  forget  the  dark  and  painful  feelings  with  which 
I  travelled  to-day  through  the  territory  of  Sadetanka. 
What  would  our  friends  at  home  feel,  if  they  could 


know  for  a  moment  the  clangers,  difficulties,  sorrows, 
and  privations,  in  which  a  Missionary  abroad  is  some- 
times placed  !  They  would  certainly  be  more  earnest 
in  prayer  for  the  Mission  cause.  But  the  comforts  at 
home  make  them  too  easily  forget  the  distressing  situa- 
tion of  their  friends  travelling  in  a  savage  country. 

About  nine  o'clock  we  had  the  misfortune  to  lose  our 
road,  as  our  guide  either  did  not  or  would  not  know  the 
exact  way  to  the  territory  of  Worra  Himano.  "^^Tien 
we  asked  the  country  people,  they  led  us  to  the  road  in 
which  we  should  have  fallen  into  the  hands  of  their  Chief, 
though  they  cunningly  concealed  this  from  our  know- 
ledge. These  people  troubled  me  much  with  the  ques- 
tion, whether  I  coidd  make  rain,  or  foretel  from  the 
stars  when  they  would  have  rain.  I  directed  them  to 
Him,  in  whose  hands  is  heaven  and  earth,  and  who  will 
give  us  all  that  we  want  for  our  temporal  welfare,  if  we 
first  seek  for  the  real  welfare  of  om*  souls  through  faith 
in  Jesus  Christ,  our  only  Saviour  and  Mediator.  My 
servants  told  me  on  this  occasion,  that  Sidi-Music 
had  asked  them  yesterday  evening,  whether  I  did 
not  know  from  the  observation  of  the  stars  what  would 
happen  to  me. 

About  ten  o'clock  we  passed  a  place  called  Oatara, 
where  Ras  Ali  had  his  camp  last  year,  when  he  was 
attacked  by  the  Wollo  Gallas  and  lost  several  detacli- 
ments.  From  this  point  we  descended  into  a  difficult 
defile,  where  I  saw  many  beautiful  birds ;  but  we  did 
not  venture  to  discharge  a  gun,  as  this  would  have 


been  the  signal  for  a  general  assembly  of  the  inhabi- 
tants around.  We  descended  as  quietly  and  as  quickly 
as  possible.  We  forgot  eating  and  drinking  on  this 
most  beautiful  spot,  as  we  expected  every  moment  an 
attack  from  the  rapacious  inhabitants. 

About  twelve  o'clock  we  met  on  our  road  about  thii'ty 
soldiers  of  the  Governor  Ensenne,  who  were  all  armed 
with  shields  and  spears,  and  had  the  appearance  of  at- 
tempting an  attack  on  our  Caffila,  as  they  at  first  con- 
sidered us  merchants.  I  instantly  ordered  five  of  my 
musketeers  to  march  in  front  of  our  animals,  while  I 
was  in  the  rear  with  the  others.  The  soldiers  imme- 
diately withdi'cw  from  the  road,  and  gazed  at  our  im- 
posing weapons.  The  bayonets  particularly  attracted 
their  attention.  They  then  sat  down,  most  probably  to 
consult  what  they  should  do  ;  but  none  of  them  ven- 
tured to  molest  or  attack  us,  and  it  seemed  as  if  they 
were  more  afraid  of  us  than  we  of  them.  But  now 
oiu'  attention  was  directed  to  the  village,  which  we  saw 
at  some  distance  before  us  on  the  way-side.  I  learned 
with  the  most  painful  feelings  that  there  was  the 
house  of  the  famous  robber  Ensenne,  a  true  companion 
of  Sadetanka.  I  was  told  that  he  formerly  resided 
on  a  neighbom'ing  hill ;  but  that  when  he  heard  that 
several  caffilas  passed  the  road,  without  paying  a  visit 
to  the  robber  dreaded  so  much,  he  had  his  house  built 
close  to  the  way-side.  Of  course  no  merchant  will 
now  venture  by  this  road.  Our  situation  was  now 
extremely  precarious,  and  I  felt  something  of  the  wrest- 


liug  which  Jacob  had  before  he  met  his  brother  Esau. 
I  cousulted  mth  my  men,  whether  we  could  not  deviate 
from  the  road ;  but  this  was  found  impossible,  as  we 
were  sm-rounded  on  both  sides  by  steep  and  impassable 
hills,  and  as  in  doing  so,  we  should  only  have  raised 
more  the  suspicion  and  rapacity  of  the  inhabitants,  and 
of  the  robber  in  particular.  We  resolved  therefore  to 
go  on  om-  way  and  to  risk  every  thing  we  could  under 
the  almighty  guidance  of  Him  who  had  brought  us  so 
far  in  safety. 

Having  approached  the  house  of  the  Governor  En- 
senne,  one  of  my  people  proposed  to  halt  and  see  the 
robber  in  his  lodging ;  but  I  judged  it  better  to  pass 
bv  the  dangerous  spot  with  all  possible  haste,  because  if  he 
once  saw  om*  persons  and  property,  he  might  become 
desirous  of  possessing  what  we  had.  Happily  the 
watchmen  could  not  make  out  who  we  were,  and  so 
they  did  not  stop  us  before  the  walls  of  the  house,  and 
we  went  on  before  they  had  time  to  inform  their  master 
of  the  passing  by  of  an  extraordinary  stranger.  The 
Governor,  however,  immediately  sent  his  son  with  a  few 
soldiers  to  prevent  us  going  further,  till  he  had  heard 
some  particulars  of  our  })ersons  and  journey.  At  first 
I  objected  to  halt ;  but  thinking  that  I  had  no  right 
to  refuse  an  inquiry  of  the  lord  of  the  country,  I  sat 
down  under  a  tree,  about  300  yards  distant  from  his 
house.  I  then  dispatched  the  servant  of  Adara  Bille 
to  give  the  Governor  all  the  explanations  that  he  wanted. 
I  requested  him  to  say  that  I  should  have  called  upon 



him  if  I  had  been  acquainted  with  him  for  some  time, 
and  if  I  had  not  intended  to  reach  before  evening  the 
territory  of  Adara  Bille,  which  Imam  Liban  had  given 
him  among  his  tribe ;  and  that  as  he  himself  would 
be  aware  of  the  long  distance  I  had  still  before  me,  he 
would  allow  me  to  go  on,  lest  night  should  overtake  me. 
The  servant  went  while  we  rested  under  the  tree  in  sad 
expectation  of  the  answer  of  the  Governor.  His  son^s 
attention  was  entii'cly  directed  to  our  guns,  and  he  fre- 
quently asked  how  many  men  could  be  killed  with  one 
musket.  The  bayonets  frightened  him  a  great  deal. 
After  a  considerable  time  the  servant  returned,  saying, 
that  Ensenne  had  sworn  that  he  would  not  have  al- 
lowed us  to  pass,  if  a  servant  of  Adara  Bille  had  not 
been  with  us.  The  servant  told  him,  that  he  should 
have  nothing  to  do  with  us,  as  we  had  so  many 
dangerous  weapons  with  us,  that  we  could  destroy  him 
and  his  whole  retinue  in  an  instant.  The  son  of  En- 
senne retui'ned,  and  we  proceeded  on  om*  way.  My 
servants  could  not  refrain  from  saying,  that  it  was  God 
who  had  inclined  the  heart  of  that  bad  man  to  peace 
toward  us.  Other  servants  said,  "The  God  of  our 
master  is  good,  and  will  not  forsake  us." 

Although  we  had  got  rid  of  Ensenne,  yet  we  looked 
back  from  time  to  time,  fearing  he  would  change  his 
mind  in  the  mean  time,  and  send  a  messenger  request- 
ing us  to  return.  We  drove  on  our  animals  as  quick 
as  possible.  To  my  astonishment  they  could  stand  the 
task,    although  for  some  days  they  had  been  much 


harassed,  and  had  been  travelUng  since  sl\  o'clock  this 
morning.  In  one  word,  the  Lord  gave  nie  to  understand 
that  he  had  removed  the  difficuUies  and  not  myself. 

About  five  o'clock  we  descended  into  the  bed  of  the 
river  Adella,  which  rises  at  the  foot  of  Korkorra,  and 
runs  to  the  river  Bashilo.  It  separates  the  territory  of 
the  tribe  Charso  from  that  of  Laggambo.  About  six 
o'clock  we  crossed  the  river  Melka-chillo,  which  comes 
from  the  mountain  Sako,  and  separates  Charso  from  the 
tribe  Worra  Himano.  We  were  compelled  to  pass  tlic 
night  in  the  territory  of  Imam  Liban,  as  we  were  almost 
certain  of  an  attack  if  we  rested  in  any  other  tribe. 

Having  crossed  the  river  Melka-chillo,  where  there 
is  more  security  for  travellers,  its  ruler  being  dependent 
on  Gondar  and  a  relation  of  Ras  Ali,  I  proposed  to 
sleep  in  the  wilderness  on  the  banks  of  the  river,  as 
there  was  plenty  of  grass  for  our  starving  animals,  and 
plenty  of  wood  and  water.  My  people,  however, 
would  not  consent  to  this  proposal,  having  been  frigh- 
tened too  much  during  the  day  time.  The  night  over- 
took us,  and  a  heavy  rain  threatened  to  increase  the  in- 
conveniences of  our  situation.  We  had  already  marched 
from  six  o'clock  in  the  morning  till  night-fall,  and  had 
not  taken  any  food,  and  yet  we  had  to  go  on  still  fur- 
ther, or  rather  totter,  though  we  could  not  see  any 
village  in  the  neighbourhood.  However,  I  found  my 
consolation  and  joy  in  singing  the  German  hymn, 
"  Recommend  thy  ways  and  all  thy  sorrows  to  the 
fatherly  care." 

Q  2 

310  ARRIVE    AT    TARTAR    AMBA. 

It  is  quite  impossible  for  our  friends  in  Em*ope,  and 
those  who  are  so  fond  of  reading  travels,  to  conceive 
my  feelings  under  such  distressing  circumstances. 
Separated  from  the  whole  world,  exposed  to  dangers, 
indescribable  difficulties  and  sorrows,  we  had  to  pro- 
secute our  way  in  a  hostile  and  inhospitable  country. 
How  miserable  should  I  have  been,  if  I  had  not  known 
the  fire-pillar,  the  almighty  covenant-God,  accompanying 
me  with  His  invisible  presence  ! 

Having  ascended  a  hill  for  a  long  time,  without 
knowing  where  the  road  would  lead  us,  we  arrived,  to 
our  unspeakable  joy,  at  the  village  of  Tartar  Amba,  which 
Imam  Liban  had  given  to  Adara  Bille  in  sign  of 
friendship.  As  the  villagers  were  all  asleep,  we  had 
some  difficulty  to  find  any  one  who  would  give  us  shel- 
ter against  the  falling  rain,  and  still  more  who  would 
give  some  refreshment  to  our  party  almost  dying  with 
hunger.  After  many  vain  endeavours  and  attempts  at 
being  received  by  the  villagers,  at  last  a  Mahomedan^s 
heart  was  affected  at  hearing  of  our  situation.  He  got 
up,  gave  us  his  house,  and  some  bread  and  beer.  Hav- 
ing refreshed  myself  with  what  our  host  had  given  in 
haste,  I  thanked  my  Heavenly  Father  for  the  infinite 
mercy  He  had  given  me  this  day,  I  lay  dowTi  as  I  was, 
on  the  ground,  and  fell  asleep. 

March  22,  1842— We  started  from  Tartar  Amba 
veiy  late,  as  our  animals  as  well  as  ourselves  wanted 
an  unusual  rest.  Our  direction  was  then  north-west, 
and  sometimes  north.     About  eleven  o'clock  we  passed 

ARRIVE   AT   TANTA.  311 

througli  a  large  plain  comitiy.  To  the  east  of  our 
road  were  two  steep  single  hills^  at  a  distance  from  each 
other  of  about  one  English  mile.  On  each  hill  was  a 
large  village.  These  hills  are  called  upper  and  lower 
Chiffa.  They  serve  as  strongholds  in  time  of  war,  and 
against  sudden  inroads  of  the  people  of  Laggambo  and 
Charso  into  the  territory  of  Worra  Himano. 

About  foiu'  o'clock  we  reached  Tanta^  the  capital  of 
Worra  Himano,  where  Iman  Liban  resides.  There  is 
only  one  entrance  to  the  village,  which  is  secured 
against  a  sudden  inroad  by  means  of  a  ditch  and 
wall.  On  arriving  near  this  ditch  we  were  ordered  to 
halt,  till  my  arrival  had  been  announced  to  Imam  Liban, 
who  immediately  gave  orders  that  I  should  come  and 
see  him.  On  walking  up  the  little  hill  on  which  the 
village  is  built,  I  was  much  annoyed  by  the  multitudes 
of  people  gazing  at  me.  ]\Iost  probably  they  had 
never  seen  a  white  man  before.  I  had  the  satisfaction 
of  meeting  in  the  court-yard  two  messengers  of  the 
King  of  Shoa,  who  had  been  sent  to  Imam  Liban  on 
some  business.  They  proved  very  useful  to  me  in  my 
proceedings  with  the  Imam. 

On  being  introduced  to  the  Imam,  I  found  him  sur- 
rounded by  his  favourite  chiefs,  of  whom  the  eldest,  as 
he  appeared  to  me,  and  most  influential,  gave  a  reply 
to  the  wishes  of  health  and  happiness,  which  I  had  ex- 
pressed toward  the  Chieftain.  At  the  first  moment  I 
took  this  speaker  for  the  Imam  himself,  till  I  was  cor- 
rected by  my  introducer,  ^\  ho  pointed  out  a  little  figure 


in  the  corner  of  the  room.     I  did  not  know  at  that  time 
that  the  Imam  Liban  was  only  a  boy  of  fourteen  years 
of  age^   and  that  he  was   still  guarded  by  his  Lators. 
He  was  nicely  dressed  in  a   large  white   Abyssinian 
cloth  of  cotton,  with  which  he  covered  his  face,  so  that 
I  could  scarcely  get  a  sight  of  his  features.     He  asked 
me  about  the  country   from  whence   I  had  come,  and 
where  I  was  going  to.     Then  his  chiefs  asked  promis- 
cuous questions  regarding  my  own  country,  its  customs, 
arts,  &c. ;  but  in  so  hasty  a  manner,  that  I  could  scarcely 
finish  one  subject  before  they  touched  another.     They 
were  really  like  childi-en.  They  then  presented  me  with 
a  book,  which  a  soldier  of  the  Imam  had  captured  in  the 
last  war  of  Ras  Ali  with  Aubie  in  Begemeder.     It  was 
an  Amharic  copy  of  the  four  Gospels,   printed  by  the 
Bible  Society,  and  given  by  Mr.  Isenberg  to  a  soldier 
during  his  stay  at  Adowah.     I  read  to  them  the  5th 
chapter  of  St.  Matthew,  and  gave  a  few  explanations, 
to  which  they  listened  with  an   attention  which  I  did 
not  expect  from  Mahomedans.     It  is  highly  gratifying 
to  find,  that  the  seed  of  eternal  life,  which  has  been 
spread  over  Abyssinia  by  our  Mission  in  Tigre,  has  been 
carried  to  the  remotest  provinces  to  which  a  Missionary 
has  scarcely  access,  and  we  may  confidently  trust,  that 
this  seed,  which  we  in  our   short-sightedness  consider 
as  lost,  will  exhibit  some  rejoicing  fruits  at  the  great 
day  of  revelation.     May  we  therefore  continue  om*  un- 
wearied exertions  to  our  poor  Abyssinian  fellow-crea- 
tures, in  good  hope,  that  our  labours  will  not  be  in 
vain,  as  it  is  not  our  cause,  but  the  Lord's  ! 

IMAN  LIBAN.  343 

Before  leaving  the  Imam's  room  I  begged  him  to 
give  me  some  information  about  our  road  to  Gondar,  and 
to  render  me  such  assistance  as  I  should  require  in 
going  thi'ough  his  territory  and  beyond.  He  replied^  that 
he  was  very  sorry  to  inform  me  of  the  present  insecu- 
rity of  the  road  between  his  territory  and  Begemeder  ; 
and  that  the  robbers  had  endangered  the  way  so  much, 
that  lately  one  of  his  own  Governors  on  returning  from 
the  camp  of  Ras  Ali  had  been  attacked  and  compelled 
to  fight  his  way  throvigh  a  band  of  robbers,  amount- 
ing to  about  two  or  three  hundi-ed  men.  I  replied,  that 
I  had  ah-eady  been  made  aware  of  the  parties  plunder- 
ing strangers  near  the  river  Checheho ;  but  that  this 
intelligence,  disagreeable  as  it  was  to  me,  would  not 
prevent  me  from  prosecuting  my  way,  as  I  hoped  that 
the  robbers  would  not  venture  to  attack  my  gunners. 
"  Well  then,''  he  said,  "  if  you  beheve  this,  you  shall 
ha^e  my  permission  to  start  from  here ;  but  I  will  at 
all  events  order  my  Governor  at  Daunt  to  conduct  you 
beyond  the  river  Checheho,  where  you  will  find  the 
robbers  less  numerous,  and  where  you  will  be  able 
to  make  up  your  business  with  them  by  means  of  your 

As  the  son  of  the  Governor  of  Daunt,  whose  name 
is  Karaioo-^Iaitcha,  was  in  the  room,  the  kind  Imam 
ordered  him  to  set  out  to-morrow,  and  to  inform  his 
father  of  his  orders  for  my  conveyance  beyond  the 
Checheho.  I  thanked  him  obligingly,  and  left  the 


After  I  had  pitched  my  tent,  a  servant  was  sent  to 
attend  me  during  my  stay  in  Tanta.     A  large  quantity 
of  beer,  hydromel,  and  bread  was  also  brought.     I  had 
scarcely  refreshed  myself  with  a  little  of  these  provi- 
sions,  when  I  was  informed  that  the  Imam  was  sitting 
on  the  wall  opposite  to  my  tent,  and  that  he  wished  to 
see  me  in  order  to    ask    some  questions.     On  going 
to  him,  he  first  asked  me,  whether  the  King  of  Shoa 
had  really  received  muskets,  cannons,   and  other  valua- 
ble articles  from  the  King  of  the  White  people  beyond 
the  Great  Sea.     I  replied,    that  this  was  quite  correct ; 
that  the  Queen  of  a  great  nation,   called  the  English, 
had     sent   to   the    King    of    Shoa   a   Representative, 
with  a  present  of  300  muskets,   100  pistols,  two  can- 
nons, and  many  other  articles  of  great  value — that  the 
Queen,  under  whose  protection  I  had  the  honour  to  be, 
had  sent  these  presents  as  tokens  of  friendship,   and 
not  as  tribute,  because    she  paid  tribute  to  nobody, 
while  millions    of  people  paid  tribute  to  her — that  the 
King  of  Shoa  had  sent  letters  to  the  Governor  at  Aden, 
in   Arabia,   who  had  acquainted  the   Queen  with  the 
desire  of  the  King  of  Shoa  to  join  in  friendship  with 
her;    whereupon    she  had  sent  those    presents — that 
though  she  possessed  the  greatest  power,   wealth,  and 
happiness,  yet  she  earnestly   desired  that   all  other  na- 
tions should  advance  to  the  same  state  of  happiness ; 
and  although  she  feared  nobody,  yet  she  was  concerned 
in  promoting  the  welfare  of  all  her  fellow-creatures. 
She  was,  I  added,  particularly  desirous  of  keeping  up 

IMAX   LIB  AN.  345 

friendly  terms  with  the  Abyssinian  rulers,  of  estabhsh- 
ing  commerce  and  intercourse  between  Abyssinia  and 
her  subjects,  and  of  promoting  the  knowledge  of  the 
countries  of  Abyssinia  and  beyond. 

The  Imam  was  extremely  attenti\re  to  what  I  said, 
and  I  behevc  he  would  have  given  me  a  satisfactory 
answer,  if  I  had  attempted  to  soUcit  his  desire  for  the 
EngHsh  fi-iendship  ;  but  I  cannot  see  how  the  English 
or  any  other  Em'opeans  could  approach  his  country,  as 
the  avenues  to  it  are  extremely  difficult  to  reach,  and 
because  he  is  not  an  independent  Chieftain.  I  there- 
fore thought  it  prudent  only  to  give  him  an  idea  of 
the  character  of  Her  IMajesty  and  of  her  subjects,  and 
to  solicit  his  kind  treatment  toward  Eui'opeans  in 

He  then  requested  me  to  allow  my  people,  who  had 
been  drilled  a  little  by  the  English  Artillery-men  at 
Aukobar,  to  go  through  the  military  exercises  of  my 
country.  I  said,  that  I  was  no  soldier,  but  a  teacher  of 
the  Word  of  God,  which  was  contained  in  the  book 
which  he  had  shown  me  this  afternoon  ;  and  that  I  was 
a  Christian  teacher,  having  been  sent  to  Abyssinia  to 
teach  its  inhabitants  the  true  way  to  their  eternal  wel- 
fare, and  not  to  teach  them  military  matters,  with  which 
I  was  not  acquainted.  However,  if  he  wished  to  see 
the  militaiy  exercises  of  my  country,  my  people  would 
show  him,  though  they  themselves  did  not  know  much 
about  the  matter,  as  I  had  only  allowed  them  to  be 
drilled  as  far  as  I  thought  proper,  and  as  they  might 
Q  5 


be  useful  to  me  in  going  through  savage  countries. 
Most  of  them  managed  the  business  so  well  in  firing 
quickly  and  precisely,  that  the  Imam  covered  his  face, 
and  exclaimed  with  astonishment,  that  no  Abyssinian 
force  could  stand  against  a  few  hundred  soldiers  of  my 
country.  He  then  added,  "  You  may  go  wherever  you 
like,  nobody  will  be  able  to  rob  you.^' 

Tanta  is  a  small  village,  containing  about  600  inha- 
bitants. A  market  is  held  here  every  week,  and  many 
articles  are  brought  for  sale.  The  people  of  "Worra 
Himano,  though  originally  Gallas,  seldom  speak  the 
language  of  the  latter.  I  have  observed  this  mth  all 
the  Wolla  tribes  through  which  I  have  come  since  I 
left  Shoa.  Most  of  the  inhabitants  speak  the  Amharic 
better  than  the  Galla,  and  I  have  reason  to  suppose, 
that  the  Galla  language  will  be  entirely  forgotten  by 
the  rising  generation,  as  has  been  the  case  in  the  tribe 
of  Tehooladere,  where  a  few  persons  only  understand 
the  Galla-language.  The  continual  intercourse  of  the 
Wollo  Gallas  with  the  Abyssinians  in  the  north,  and 
the  Shoans  in  the  south,  seems  to  me  to  be  the  cause 
of  this  general  reception  of  the  Amharic  among  the 
Wollo  tribes.  But  I  doubt  whether  the  western  tribes 
are  so  advanced  in  the  Amharic  as  the  eastern  tribes 
are,  as  these  have  less  intercourse  with  the  Abyssinians, 
and  have  been  less  dependent  on  the  rulers  of  Gondar. 
Furthermore,  I  have  observed,  that  the  dialect  of  the 
Wollo  Gallas  is  a  little  different  from  that  of  the  Gallas 
in  the  south  of  Shoa.      They  have  mixed  up  Arabic 


and  Amharic  expressions  with  tlie  pui'e  Galla  tongue, 
as  we  may  expect  from  Maliomedans.  It  would  not 
therefore  signify  if  this  Galla  dialect  were  to  be  com- 
pletely extinguished  in  process  of  time,  as  the  pure 
Galla  will  be  preserved  in  the  south  and  south-west 
of  Shoa. 

The  territory  of  Imam  Liban  extends  itself  pretty 
far,  four  or  five  days  being  reqmred  to  traverse  it  from 
west  to  east-  The  Imam  is  considered  as  defender  of 
the  INIahomedan  faith,  and  Head  of  the  I\Iahomedan 
party ;  and  this  is  the  reason  of  the  attachment  which 
all  these  tribes  entertain  toward  him.  He  is  the  Re- 
presentative of  the  ]\Iahomedan  power  in  Abyssinia. 
He  is  the  Muhamedo,  as  they  significantly  call  him. 
And  this  was  another  reason  why  I  would  not  endea- 
vour to  raise  his  desire  for  British  friendship  and  assis- 
tance, as  in  my  opinion  the  cause  of  civilization  in 
Abyssinia  and  the  countries  beyond  would  rather  lose 
than  gain,  if  the  British  should  support  the  INIahome- 
dan party,  which  would  use  its  new  strength  to  propa- 
gate the  same  system  of  bigotry  and  fanaticism  with 
which  they  are  infected,  to  all  the  other  Galla-tribes 
which  have  not  yet  fallen  into  their  hands.  They  would, 
if  powerful  enough,  immediately  exterminate  Christi- 
anity in  Abyssinia.  A\Tierever  they  take  a  Christian 
district,  they  bm-n  the  churches  and  compel  the  inha- 
bitants to  adopt  ]\Iahomedanism. 

The  young  Iman  Liban  has  a  countenance  expres- 
sive of  intelligence,  and  his  manners  and  behaviour  are 

348  .       TAKE  LEAVE  OF  IMAN  LIBAN. 

pleasing.  It  seems  to  me  that  he  will  prove  a  brave 
warrior  in  the  course  of  time.  His  conversation  is  en- 
gaging, though  generally  on  the  subject  of  war  and 
war-like  people.  But  it  is  possible  that  the  present 
disturbances  of  Northern  Abyssinia  deprive  him  of  the 
prospect  and  hope  of  future  power,  and  assign  to  him 
the  lot  of  insignificance,  which  is  annually  cast  upon 
many  of  the  Abyssinian  rulers,  who  rise  and  vanish 
in  a  short  time,  as  is  the  case  with  all  earthly  hap- 

March  23,  1842 — Having  selected  a  few  pleasing 
things  for  the  Imam,  I  went  to  present  them  to  him, 
and  take  leave  of  him.  The  articles  consisted  of  a  colour- 
ed handkerchief,  a  pair  of  scissors,  a  razor,  and  a  box  of 
phosphoric  matches.  The  last  pleased  him  amazingly, 
and  he  expressed  his  sincere  thanks.  He  took  a  fancy 
to  my  percussion-gun  ;  but  with  this  I  would  not  part. 
He  has  about  1000  match-lock-guns,  as  I  learned  from 
good  authority.  His  army,  which  he  can  raise  in  a 
short  time,  is  considerable ;  but  his  revenues  appear  to 
be  very  scanty.  The  people  are  obliged  to  join  the 
army  whenever  the  Chieftain  requires ;  and  as  this  oc- 
cupies a  great  deal  of  their  time,  they  will  not  pay  many 
other  tributes.  The  soldiers  must  provide  themselves 
with  spears,  shields,  swords,  and  food  during  the  whole 
expedition.  The  gunners  only  receive  their  weapons 
from  the  Chieftain.  This  is  the  case  in  Shoa  and  other 
Abyssinian  provinces ;  but  in  Tigre  and  Amhara,  they 
have  guns  of  their  own. 

DEPARTURE  FROM  TANTA.         349 

All  the  Chiefs  which  I  have  at  present  seen,  have  less 
state  than  the  King  of  Shoa,  and  their  form  of  Go- 
vernment is  much  looser  than  that  of  Shoa.  It  is 
true,  all  other  Abyssinian  subjects  can  go  wherever  they 
like,  can  dress  themselves  as  they  like,  and  have  more 
liberty  in  many  respects ;  but  there  is  no  province  of 
Abyssinia  where  person  and  property  is  so  much  res- 
pected and  secui'ed  as  in  Shoa  ;  though  in  Shoa  there 
is  much  despotism,  people  being  limited  by  numerous 
restrictions  and  regulations.  But  after  all,  Shoa 
compared  with  the  other  parts  of  Abyssinia,  has  un- 
questionably the  preference,  though  the  Shoans  cannot 
go  where  they  like,  dress  as  they  like,  &c.  Robbeiy  is 
seldom  heard  of  in  Shoa ;  so  that  yoii  are  as  secure  on  a 
journey  as  in  Europe.  If  you  should  lose  on  the  road 
such  things  as  people  dare  not  use,  they  will  to  a  cer- 
tainty be  restored  to  you,  as  the  King  would  pimish 
any  one  who  ventured  to  conceal  them.  It  is  true, 
that  most  of  tlie  restrictions  of  his  Shoan  Majesty  are 
obstnicting  to  commerce  and  intercourse  ;  but  it  is  to  be 
hoped  that  with  the  increasing  influence  of  the  British 
this  will  be  done  away ;  and  in  fact,  his  Majesty  has  re- 
moved many  restrictions  by  the  tenns  of  the  treaty 
which  he  concluded  with  Capt.  Harris,  Her  IVIajesty's 
Representative,  on  the  16th  Nov.  IS-ll. 

Having  repeatedly  expressed  my  hearty  thanks  to 
Imam  Liban,  I  took  leave  of  him.  We  started  from 
Tanta  about  seven  o'clock,  accompanied  by  the  son  of 
the  Governor  of  Daunt,  the  frontier  of  Imam's  territory 


in  the  west.  Our  direction  was  north-west- west.  We 
had  before  us  a  long  descent^  which  caused  us  many 
difficulties.  The  son  of  Ayto  Karaioo-Maitcha  went 
before  us,  in  order  to  inform  his  father  that  we  should 
arrive  at  Daunt  to-morrow. 

About  eleven  o'clock  we  reached  the  bed  of  a  river 
running  to  the  river  Bashilo.  The  bed  was  dry,  and 
water  was  only  to  be  had  in  some  places.  We  halted 
in  the  bed  of  the  river  till  the  greatest  heat  of  the  day 
was  over.  In  the  south-west  of  Tanta  we  saw  the 
stronghold  of  Magdala.  This  is  a  high  and  large  hill, 
resembling  the  form  of  a  square,  the  banks  of  which 
are  high  and  almost  perpendicular.  There  is  a  plain 
on  the  top,  with  water  and  a  field  for  cultivation,  on 
which  the  Imam  has  a  garrison  and  keeps  his  treasures, 
and  in  which  he  takes  refuge  when  an  enemy  is  too 
strong  for  him.  No  Abyssinian  force  could  easily  take 
this  stronghold.  There  is  only  one  entrance,  which  is 
in  the  east.  About  three  o'clock  we  were  overtaken  by 
rain.  We  met  many  people  going  to  the  market  of 
Tanta,  which  is  held  on  Saturday. 

About  four  o'clock  we  arrived  at  the  bed  of  the  river 
Bashilo,  which  rises  in  the  mountains  of  the  Yechoo  in 
the  north-east,  taking  up  most  of  the  contributing  rivu- 
lets and  torrents  of  the  countries  around,  and  canying 
its  water  to  the  Nile  between  Godjam  and  Begemeder.  It 
is  a  very  fine  river,  with  steep  banks  and  a  deep  bed, 
between  a  range  of  mountains.  It  is  upward  of  100 
feet  in  breadth ;  but  its  real  water-course  is  only  about 


thii*ty  feet.  Its  depth  was  half  a  foot  at  the  spot  where 
I  crossed.  The  preceding  raiu  may  have  increased  it  a 
little.  Its  curvities  are  numberless,  as  it  must  some- 
times take  a  circuitous  way  to  receive  a  ri\'ulet,  which 
could  not  reach  the  Bashilo  if  this  gatherer  of  the 
water-taxes  would  not  go  to  it.  The  Bashilo  gave  me 
great  pleasure  in  studying  the  natui'e  of  the  countiy, 
and  really  there  is  nothing  more  interesting  for  a  tra- 
veller than  the  study  of  rivers  and  mountains. 

As  we  could  not  reach  the  next  village  beyond  the 
river  Bashilo  before  night,  a  petty  Governor,  whose  ac- 
quaintance I  had  made  on  the  road,  advised  us  to  pass 
the  night  on  the  banks  of  the  river,  an  advice  which 
afterward  proved  useful.  The  only  disadvantage  of 
this  stay  was,  that  we  could  not  get  any  provisions. 

March  24,  1842 — We  started  early  from  the  river 
Bashilo  as  we  had  a  long  way  before  us  to  Daunt,  where 
the  Fit-Aurari  (general  of  the  advanced-guard)  Karaioo- 
Maitcha,  should  receive  and  conduct  us  to  Bcgemeder. 
But  the  way  of  Providence  had  put  an  end  to  our  jour- 
ney, though  we  were  only  five  days'  journey  from  Gon- 
dar.  From  the  river  Bashilo  we  had  to  ascend  a  great 
deal  tlirough  a  com])letc  wilderness,  the  country  having 
been  abandoned  by  the  inhabitants  for  many  years.  On 
arriving  at  the  top  of  the  mountain  which  we  had  been 
ascending,  a  large  plain,  called  Dalanta,  was  presented 
to  our  view.  This  plain  was  rich  in  cattle,  grass,  &c.  ; 
and  all  that  we  saw  gave  the  appearance  of  the  inliabi- 
tants  possessing  considerable  wealth.      But  this  weahh 

352  MR.  krapf's  relinquishes  his  intention 

however  was  to  be  put  an  end  to  \^'itll  the  occurrences 
of  this  day.  Having  traversed  the  plain  on  its  south- 
western boundary,  we  descended  to  the  road  which 
should  lead  us  to  the  house  of  Maitcha-Karaioo  on 
the  hill  of  Daunt,  which  we  could  distinctly  see  already. 
On  a  sudden  we  received  the  disagreeable  and  sad  in- 
telligence, from  people  whom  we  met  on  the  road,  that 
Karaioo-Maitcha  had  been  killed  this  morning  j  and 
that  his  son,  who  had  been  sent  by  the  Imam  on  our 
account,  had  been  imprisoned,  in  consequence  of  an 
attack  which  Berroo  Aligas,  the  Governor  of  Wadela, 
had  made  upon  the  territory  of  Imam  Liban.  The 
people  who  gave  us  this  news  ran  away  in  great  haste, 
in  order  to  secure  their  property  on  the  plain  of  Da- 
lanta  before  the  troops  of  Berroo  Aligas  should  lay 
waste  this  plain. 

My  people  were  now  in  great  fear ;  but  I  ordered 
them  to  go  on,  as  perhaps  this  report  might  prove  \m- 
founded.  We  had,  however,  scarcely  marched  a  few 
hundi-ed  yards  further,  than  we  met  a  female  relation 
of  Imam  Liban,  who  confirmed  the  truth  of  the  intel- 
ligence. The  lady  had  escaped  fi-om  Daunt  as  soon  as 
the  Governor  had  been  killed  and  the  soldiers  of  Berroo 
Aligas  had  taken  possession  of  the  place.  She  had 
only  one  male  servant  with  her,  and  had  been  obliged, 
as  she  said,  to  leave  aU  her  property  and  even  their 
children  to  the  enemy.  On  mentioning  her  children, 
she  shed  a  stream  of  tears,  and  entreated  us  not  to 
pursue  our  joui-ney  any  farther,  but  to  return  with  her 


to  the  Imam,  as  the  ferocious  sokliery  of  Berroo 
Ahgas  would  kill  us,  or  at  all  events  plunder  us 
of  our  property.  A\Tiile  we  were  talking  with  the 
woman,  we  were  met  by  other  people  who  had  taken 
flight.  AVe  therefore  had  no  further  doubts  of  the 
truth  of  the  fact.  There  was  now  the  difficult  ques- 
tion, what  we  should  do ;  whether  we  should  retreat, 
or  go  on.  Most  of  my  people  advised  a  retreat  in  due 
time,  and  I  myself  was  finally  of  that  opinion,  as  we 
could  not  stand  the  chance  of  foixing  our  way  through 
the  plundering  soldiers  of  Berroo  Aligas.  They  were 
not  the  robbers  whom  we  expected  to  find  near  the 
river  Checheho,  and  whom  we  should  most  probably 
have  been  able  to  overcome,  as  they  had  no  fire-arms ; 
but  it  would  have  been  madness  on  our  part  to 
attempt  a  defence  against  the  prevailing  force  of  Berroo 
Aligas'  gunners  and  cavalry.  If  we  had  defended  our- 
selves, they  would  have  killed  us  ;  and  if  we  had  made 
no  defence  whatever,  they  would  have  plundered  us. 
I  therefore  agreed  with  my  people  to  a  speedy  retreat, 
as  it  is  well  known  in  Abyssinia,  that  an  ap])roaching 
enemy  runs  in  a  short  time  over  a  large  extent  of  coun- 
try ;  and  that  if  once  the  confusion  has  begun,  you  can- 
not even  rely  on  youi-  friends  behind,  as  then  every  one 
does  as  he  pleases.  Thus  we  retreated  with  the  greatest 
grief,  as  we  were  not  far  from  Gondar,  and  as  we  had 
already  overcome  so  many  difficulties  on  the  road. 
Had  wc  known  that  Adara  Bille,  whom  we  considered 
our  greatest  and  best  friend,  would  afterward  plunder 

354  PLAIN    OF    DALANTA  : 

US,  we  would  have  risked  our  way  to  Goudar  by  all 
means  ;  but  who  can  tell  what  will  happen  to  him  on 
the  morrow  ! 

Having  returned  to  the  plain  of  Dalanta,  some  of 
my  people  advised  to  pass  the  night  in  one  of  the  vil- 
lages, until  we  should  learn  whether  the  enemy  would 
really  come  by  the  road  on  which  we  had  retreated. 
But  I  strongly  objected  to  this"  plan,  because,  if  the 
enemy  once  reached  the  plain,  he  could  easily  overrun 
the  villages  before  we  should  be  able  to  escape  with  our 
heavy  baggage  of  books  and  tired  animals.  We  there- 
fore left  the  plain  and  ascended  to  the  hills,  where  we 
quartered  ourselves  with  the  same  man  whom  I  had 
providentially  become  acquainted  with  on  the  road  yes- 
terday. There  was  no  fear  of  our  being  attacked  before 
night,  as  the  steep  banks  of  the  hills  would  prevent  the 
enemy's  horsemen  from  galloping  on. 

When  we  passed  over  the  plain  of  Dalanta  we  found 
the  whole  population  confused  and  perplexed.  They 
had  already  heard  of  what  had  happened  at  Daunt. 
Eveiy  body  who  had  a  horse  was  ready,  if  the  enemy 
should  approach,  to  take  flight.  Our  host  behaved 
veiy  kindly.  He  gave  us  provision,  without  which  we 
had  been  since  yesterday.  He  was  very  busy  in  sending 
his  cattle  to  the  mountains  beyond  the  river  Bashilo, 
where  the  enemy  could  not  catch  them  so  easily.  I 
asked,  whether  they  would  not  make  any  resistance  in 
favour  of  their  present  master,  the  Imam  Liban.  My 
host  replied,  that  poor  people  never  fought,  as  they 


would  make  submission  to  every  one  who  could  conquer 
the  country.  He  added^  "  The  strongest  shall  be  our 
master.  Poor  people  think  only  of  saving  their  cattle 
and  not  of  saving  theii*  master^  who  has  to  look  out  for 

During  the  night  I  examined  my  luggage,  in  order 
to  select  those  things  which  were  heavy  and  which  I 
could  leave  behind  in  case  we  should  be  obliged  to  leave 
the  place  in  a  hurry  to-morrow.  My  mind  was  not  a 
little  excited  at  the  thought  of  our  being  so  near  Gon- 
dar,  and  being  obliged  to  return  to  Shoa.  I  could 
hardly  believe  that  we  were  really  on  our  retreat,  and  I 
had  some  hope  that  an  occurrence  would  happen  and 
lead  us  to  the  place  of  our  destination. 

March  25,  1842 — After  day-break  we  received  the 
news  that  the  enemy  was  advancing  toward  the  plain  of 
Dalanta.  I  was  just  considting  with  my  host  whether 
I  should  not  send  a  letter  and  some  presents  to  Beroo 
Aligas,  and  ask  him  for  permission  to  go  through  his 
countiy,  and  for  a  safeguard  as  far  as  Begemcder. 
]\Iy  host  agreed  with  me ;  but  the  question  was,  who 
would  take  the  letter  and  convey  it  through  the  plunder- 
ing army  of  Bcrroo  Aligas.  My  Galla,  named  Bcrkie, 
oflFered  to  take  charge  of  the  letter.  The  letter  was 
written,  and  the  servant  ready  to  start,  when  we  learned 
that  BeiTOO-Aligas  himself  had  not  yet  arrived  at  Daunt, 
and  that  only  his  plundering  advanced-guard  was 
moving  toward  Dalanta.  Under  these  circumstances  I 
would  not  venture  to  expose  my  servant  to  the  danger 


of  losing  his  life,  though  I   afterward  wished  that   I 
had  despatched  the  letter. 

We  left  our  host  and  retreated  beyond  the  river 
Bashiloj  which  we  crossed,  but  not  at  the  place  we  did 
the  first  time.  Having  crossed  the  river,  we  ascended 
a  steep  mountain  with  the  greatest  difficulties,  and 
nearly  lost  some  of  our  animals.  We  had  already  lost 
two  horses  of  burden  in  crossing  the  Bashilo  at  the 
first  time.  Having  arrived  on  the  top  of  the  mountain, 
we  lost  our  road,  as  we  had  no  guide  with  us,  and  as 
the  whole  country  was  a  complete  wilderness,  though 
it  might  be  beautifully  cultivated.  At  last  we  arrived 
in  the  little  village  called  Gembarghie,  after  having 
sufi'ered  much  from  the  fatigues  of  our  going  over  the 
mountains.  As  we  found  a  spring  of  water  near  the 
village,  we  pitched  om*  tent  there,  and  still  entertained 
the  hope  that  we  might  be  able  to  prosecute  om-  road 
to  Gondar,  though  a  circuitous  way.  I  had  agreed 
vdth  my  host  that  in  case  he  should  receive  better 
news  from  Daunt,  he  should  give  me  information  of 
it ;  but  his  messenger  never  reached  me,  nor  did  I  hear 
anything  more  of  my  kind  host. 

All  our  provisions,  except  coffee  were  gone,  and  very 
little  could  be  procured  in  the  village,  though  I  oficred 
whatever  payment  they  wanted.  AVe  had  therefore  no 
other  choice  than  to  look  out  for  game  with  our  guns. 
I  passed  a  very  restless  night,  being  extremely  dissatis- 
fied with  my  return ;  but  after  all,  what  could  I  do 
against  the  dispensations  of  Providence  ? 


March  26^  1842 — As  no  message  from  our  host  be- 
yond the  river  Basliilo  had  arrived^  I  judged  it  best  to  go 
from  Gembarghie  to  Tanta,  and  inquire  of  the  Imam 
what  I  should  do  in  my  perplexing  circumstances.  We 
kept  close  to  the  territory  of  Daood-Berille,  whose 
capital  is  Saint,  which  we  could  see  from  a  distance 
pretty  well.  This  man,  who  had  it  in  his  power  to  for- 
ward me  to  Gondar,  has  the  reputation  of  being  a 
robber ;  and  besides  he  was  not  on  good  terms  with 
Imam  Liban,  without  whose  recommendation  and  pro- 
tection it  was  impossible  to  proceed  to  Daood-Bcrille. 

On  our  return  from  Gembarghie  we  had  a  pretty 
view  of  the  course  of  the  river  Bashilo  to  the  mount 
Samada,  in  the  north-east  of  Godjam.  The  high 
mountains  of  Begemcder  were  also  presented  to  our 
\ievf  j  and  Debra-Tabor,  the  capital  of  Has  Ali,  was 
pointed  out  to  me  by  one  of  my  servants  who  had 
formerly  been  there.  As  I  would  not  return  to  Imam 
Liban  in  too  great  haste,  I  pitched  my  tent  near  the 
stronghold  of  Magdala  before  mentioned,  and  sent  a 
messenger  to  the  Imam,  to  ask  his  advice  in  my  critical 
situation.  In  the  mean  time,  I  inquired  whether  there 
was  any  other  road  to  Gondar  except  by  way  of  Daunt 
and  Saint ;  but  my  inquiry  was  in  vain.  My  messen- 
ger retm-ned  without  having  seen  the  Imam,  his  whole 
court  being  in  confusion  and  preparing  for  war.  My 
man  was  like  to  be  ])lundered  and  deprived  of  his  cloth 
and  mule  by  the  Imam's  o^^^l  people.  Under  such 
circumstances,  and  the   way  being  obstructed  on  all 


sides,  the  best  plan  appeared  to  return  to  Shoa  tliroiigh 
the  territory  of  Adara  Bille,  on  whose  friendship  and 
kindness  I  thought  I  could  rely. 

In  the  evening  we  received  the  intelligence,  that 
Berroo  Aligas  had  been  invested  with  the  government 
of  Daunt  by  Eas  Ali,  in  consequence  of  the  great 
services  which  Berroo  Aligas  had  rendered  to  the 
Ras  by  his  having  captui'cd  Ubea  and  his  army.  It 
would  appear  from  this  information,  that  Berroo  Aligas 
had  not  attacked  the  territory  of  Imam  Liban  from 
enmity  or  a  desire  of  increasing  his  power;  but  I 
doubted  the  truth  of  this  intelligence,  as  Has  Ali 
would  have  acquainted  his  relation,  the  Imam,  before 
he  had  invested  Berroo  Aligas  with  the  government  or 
Daunt,  which  belonged  to  the  Imam.  It  appeared  to 
me,  that  the  invader's  party  had  pm*posely  contrived 
this  report,  in  order  to  protract  or  avert  the  measures 
which  the  Imam  would  take  against  the  invading  army. 
However,  I  thought  proper  to  inquire  of  the  Imam 
himself  about  this  matter.  Under  these  circumstances 
I  compared  the  road  from  Ankobar  to  Tadjm'ra  with 
that  to  INIassowah,  and  was  led  to  the  following  con- 
clusions : — 

1.  Although  the  climate  from  Ankobar  to  Massowah 
is  superior  to  that  of  the  Danakil  country ;  and 
although  there  is  everywhere  plenty  of  water,  and  a 
cool  and  healthy  an*  on  the  Massowah  road,  yet  the 
Tadjurra  road  is  more  prefered  by  the  traveller. 

2.  It  is  true,  that  the  difficulties  arising  from  want 

THE    TADJURRA    ROAD.  359 

of  water  and  excessive  heat  in  the  Danakil  country  are 
very  great ;  but  you  do  not  meet  with  the  distui'bances 
which  ahnost  continually  happen  on  the  road  through 
northern  Abyssinia,  and  which  either  delay  or  consider- 
ably endanger  your  route. 

3.  On  the  Tadjurra  road  you  have  only  to  agree  with 
one  guide  and  proprietor  of  camels,  which  will  carry 
yom*  baggage  as  far  as  Efat ;  while  on  the  Massowah 
road  you  pass  from  the  hands  of  one  Chieftain  into  the 
hands  of  anothei',  each  of  whom  wants  a  present  for 
the  assistance  which  he  gives  you.  Besides,  as  there 
is  no  road  for  camels,  you  are  obliged  to  procure  your 
own  beasts  of  bm-den,  which  cannot  cany  the  same 
quantity  of  baggage  which  a  camel  can. 

4.  These  beasts  of  burden  cannot  stand  a  journey, 
which  is  almost  three  times  farther  from  Ankobar, 
than  that  from  Tadjurra.  Yom*  animals  will  die,  and 
you  will  be  exposed  to  many  difficulties  till  you  have 
procured  others. 

These  and  other  reasons  led  me  to  the  conclusion, 
that  the  Tadjurra  road  is,  notwithstanding  its  incon- 
veniences and  difficulties,  preferrable  to  the  IMassowah 
road ;  and  that  therefore  the  road  from  Tadjurra  must 
be  kept  open  and  secured. 

The  gi-eat  services  which  Berroo  Aligas,  Governor  of 
Wadela  and  a  part  of  the  Yechoo,  has  rendered  to  lias 
Ali  consist  in  the  follomng  facts,  which  throw  a  light 
upon  the  present  state  of  things  in  Northern  Abyssinia. 
When  the  new  Abuna — Abba  Salama — had  arrived  in 

360  DEFEAT    OF    UBEA. 

Tigre,  Ubea  declared  war  against  Ras  x\li,  his  master. 
Joined  by  Berroo,  the  son  of  Dejaj  Goshoo,  Governor  of 
Godjam,  he  attacked  the  Ras  in  Begemeder,  near  Debra 
Tabor.  The  Has  was  completely  beaten  and  compelled 
to  take  refuge  in  a  convent  of  Wadela.  But  Berroo 
Aligas,  who  was  absent  with  his  troops  during  the 
battle,  and  did  not  know  about  the  defeat  of  his 
master,  made  a  sudden  attack  on  Ubea's  camp,  who  in 
the  afternoon  of  the  battle  was  overjoyed  at  his  victory, 
and  had  given  way  to  the  excesses  of  intoxication. 
Ubea  was  captured  in  his  tent,  being  quite  intoxicated, 
and  most  of  his  troops  were  also  imprisoned  by  Berroo 
Aligas,  who  was  then  assisted  by  those  prisoners  of 
Ras  Ali  who  had  in  the  morning  fallen  into  the  hands 
of  Ubea.  These  were  set  at  liberty,  and  imprisoned 
those  who  had  captm'ed  them  in  the  morning.  The 
Ras  regained  his  power,  while  that  of  Ubea  was  totally 
overcome.  During  the  captivity  of  Ubea,  the  Ras 
appointed  Merso,  the  brother  of  Ubea,  Governor  of 
Semien  and  Tigre  ;  but  the  Ras  was  requested  by  the 
Abunas,  who  had  taken  Ubea's  party  and  was  imprisoned 
at  the  same  time  with  Ubea,  to  set  his  friend  at  liberty. 
The  Ras  complied,  and  summoned  Merso  to  restore 
his  government  to  Ubea  his  brother ;  but  JNIerso  refused 
to  resign  and  submit  himself  to  the  orders  of  the  Ras. 
Thus  a  new  war  arose  between  Merso — who  had  at  first 
taken  the  party  of  the  Ras  till  his  brother  was  cap- 
tured— and  Ubea,  joined  by  the  forces  of  the  Ras.  When 
the  intelligence  of  Ubea's  captivity  arrived  in  Tigre,  the 

RETURN    TO    IMAX    LIBAN.  361 

people  of  this  province  chose  a  new  Governor  in  the 
person  of  Balgadaraia,  a  grandson  of  Ras  Wolda- 
Selassieh,  who  has  the  reputation  of  being  a  brave 
warrior  and  a  kind  master.  But  it  is  a  question,  whe- 
ther this  new  Governor  of  Tigre,  who  has  to  tight  with 
many  petty  chiefs  in  Tigre  itself,  will  be  able  to  keep 
up  his  power,  or  whether  he  will  be  expelled  by  Ubea 
when  he  has  settled  his  business  mth  his  brother  Merso 
in  Semien.  As  Ubea  is  assisted  by  the  Ras,  I  suppose 
Balgadaraia  cannot  stand  the  task  of  a  war  with  both 
these.  In  the  mean  time  the  roads  are  considerably 

March  27,  1842 — We  returned  this  morning  to 
Imam  Liban,  who  appeared  to  have  been  in  great  sorrow 
and  apprehensions  regarding  myself.  "SATien  he  saw 
me,  he  said,  "  You  have  done  veiy  well  in  returning  to 
me,  as  you  cannot  go  to  Gondar  under  present  circum- 
stances. If  you  Hke  you  can  take  your  refuge  with  my 
Governor  Joossoof  on  the  stronghold  of  Hoait,*  which 
my  enemies  w^ll  not  be  able  to  conquer.  In  the 
course  of  a  month  you  will  be  able  to  see  whether  you 
can  again  attempt  your  journey."  I  replied,  that  I 
could  not  take  the  part  of  any  of  the  combatants,  and 
that  I  would  prefer  taking  any  other  route  which  he 
would  recommend  to  me ;  or  if  not,  that  I  would 
return  to   Shoa.     He  said,  "  Just  as  you  like ;   but  1 

*  This  is  a  high  hill  on  the  junction  of  the  river  Basiiilo  with  another 
river,  the  name  of  which  I  have  forgotten.  The  hill  is  situated  in  the 
uorth  of  Tauta. 


cannot  send  you  to  Gondar,  as  all  the  roads  will  be 
closed  for  some  time/^  It  appeared  that  he  wished 
to  send  me  to  Hoait,  in  order  that  my  gunners  might 
assist  in  the  defence  of  the  place ;  but  I  would  never 
have  consented  to  this^  except  under  most  perplexing 
circumstances.  I  learned  afterward  that  the  stronghold 
had  been  attacked  by  Berroo  Aligas  and  his  brother 
Faris,  who  joined  him  at  the  time  of  my  retiu'n  to 
Adara  Bille,  and  that  many  men  had  been  killed  on 
both  sides. 

I  took  leave  of  Imam  Libau^  and  retm-ned  to  Tartar- 
Amba,  where  Abba  Gooalit,  the  Governor  of  Adara 
Bille's  territory  in  Worra  Himano^  received  me  well, 
and  provided  me  with  provisions,  which  had  been  very 
scanty  for  several  days. 

March  28, 1842 — Abba  Gooalit,  our  host,  treated  us 
kindly.  He  is  a  Christian.  In  general,  there  are 
many  Christians  in  Worra  Himano ;  and  I  was  told 
that  there  were  many  in  former  times  before  Amade, 
the  father  of  the  present  Imam,  by  means  of  force  and 
persuasion,  converted  a  great  number  to  the  Maho- 
medan  religion.  If  Berroo  Aligas,  who  is  a  Christian, 
should  now  be  victorious,  the  cause  of  jMahomedanism 
would  receive  a  severe  blow  in  Worra  Himano.  Abba 
Gooalit  was  civil,  but  at  the  same  time  a  great  beggar. 
He  wanted  a  mule  from  me,  though  he  saw  that  all 
my  mules  were  for  my  own  use  and  for  my  servants. 

We  left  Tartar  Amba  about  sunrise,  accompanied  by 
a  servant  of  x\bba  Gooalit.     "NYe  took   great   care   to 


avoid  going  toward  the  territory  of  Ensenne^  the 
famous  robber  in  the  tribe  Charso,  which  I  have  men- 
tioned before.  AVe  kept  our  route  in  the  territory  of 
Worra  Himano,  which  is  bounded  on  the  north  by 
Wadela  and  Yechoo,  on  the  east  by  Tehooladere,  on  the 
south  by  Ben'oo  Loobo's  and  Adara  Bille's  countries, 
and  on  the  west  by  Begemeder.  The  people  knowing 
that  I  came  from  Shoa,  frequently  asked  me,  how  many 
ounces  of  gold  I  had  received  from  the  King  of  Shoa, 
it  being  the  general  opinion  of  the  Abyssinians  in  the 
north  ;  that  there  is  much  gold  in  Shoa ;  and  that  its 
king  gives  this  metal  to  all  strangers ;  who  leave  his 
country.  In  some  instances  this  report  is  true,  as  the 
king  has  given  gold  to  some  strangers,  but  Shoa  is  not 
the  country  where  gold  is  found.  Occasionally  some 
may  be  found ;  but  the  gold  which  comes  to  Shoa,  is 
brought  from  Gm-ague  and  beyond,  where  it  is  found 
in  the  bed  of  rivers  after  the  rain.  But  no  Shoan 
subject  is  allowed  to  possess  gold,  which  is  only  in  the 
hands  of  the  king,  who  would  severely  punish  any  of 
his  subjects  who  had  any,  except  the  king  himself 
had  given  it. 

The  idea  that  Shoa  was  a  rich  gold  country  has  in- 
duced several  rulers  of  northern  Abyssinia  to  attempt  to 
subjugate  Shoa ;  but  they  never  could  succeed,  as  the 
Wollo  Gallas  took  the  part  of  the  King  of  Shoa 
against  the  invaders,  and  as  the  difficulties  from  the 
nature  of  the  counti-y  are  vciy  great.  I  lis  Shoan 
Majesty  knows  veiy  well  that  the  northern  rulers  have 

K  2 

364  MARKET    OF    TOTOLA. 

always  an  eye  upon  Shoa ;  and  therefore  he  endeavours 
to  be  on  good  terms  with  them,  and  bribes  those 
governors  with  presents  who  might  prove  prejudicial 
to  him.  Most  probably  he  will  give  up  this  system 
of  foreign  politics,  since  he  has  received  great  assistance 
in  the  British  friendship,  which,  if  he  would  only 
make  a  proper  use  of  it  would  make  him  king  of  the 
whole  of  Abyssinia. 

About  ten  o'clock  we  passed  Fala,  where  a  celebrated 

market  is  held.     It  is  situated  on  a  hill,  with  steep  and 

high  banks  in  the   east  and  west.     In  this   direction  a 

wall  of  about  three  or  four  feet  in  thickness  has  been 

built   to    close   the  road   against   an   invading    army. 

This  difficult  passage  secures  from  the  south  the  access 

to  the  interior  of  the  possessions  of  Imam  Liban.     In 

the  west  of  Fala  is  the  mount  Amora-gadel,  which  is  a 

natural  stronghold  against    the  inroads   of  the   Galla 

tribes  in  the  south-west.     In  the  east  we   saw  a  high 

hill,  called  Kemmer  Dengai,  which  was  produced  by  a 

former  Imam,  according  to  a  tradition,  which  states 

that  when  the  Imam  was  resting  on  a  stone,  he  ordered 

his  servant  to  lift  it  up ;  and  that  when  the  servant  did 

so,  the  stone  became  a  large  hill. 

About  three  o'clock  we  passed  close  to  the  market- 
place of  Totola  in  Berroo  Loobo's  country.  This  is 
one  of  the  most  celebrated  markets  of  Abyssinia.  We 
saw  immense  flocks  of  people  coming  from  all  quarters, 
as  the  market  was  to  be  held  the  next  day.  Even  the 
Boranna  Gallas,  of  the  western  Wollo  tribes,  \isit  this 


market.  INIercliants  come  from  Gondar,  Tigrc,  and 
Shoa.  Whatever  Abyssinia  produces,  is  sold  in  this 
market,  particularly  horses,  skins,  clothes,  and  slaves. 
The  duties  which  Berroo  Loobo  levies  on  this  market 
are  said  to  be  veiy  little ;  but  not^vdthstanding,  he 
receives  weekly  about  6000  or  8000  pieces  of  salt.  It 
must  be  remarked  that  a  dollar  is  changed  for  thirty 
pieces  of  salt  in  Loobo's  country.  The  people  here  are 
as  scrupulous  as  the  Shoans  in  selecting  a  certain  kind 
of  dollar.  The  dollar  must  not  only  have  seven  points 
distinctly  expressed  above  the  star  in  the  middle,  and 
s.  f.  below  ;  but  it  must  also  look  very  white,  and  must 
not  appear  dirty,  as  they  believe  that  filth  has  been  ap- 
plied to  the  dollar  for  the  purpose  of  covering  the  tin, 
of  which  it  had  been  composed  by  impostors.  I  am 
sorry  to  say,  that  they  are  not  so  particular  in  having 
their  faces  cleaned,  or  their  clothes  washed,  as  they  are 
in  selecting  this  sort  of  dollar. 

There  are  several  other  important  market  places  in 
BciTOO  Loobo's  country,  and  I  have  often  heard  that 
Berroo  encourages  trade,  and  in  general  has  great  order 
in  his  government.  The  Danakils  like  him  much,  and  his 
people  trade  to  Tadjurra.  In  this  respect  he  must  be 
superior  to  the  King  of  Shoa,  who  did  not  allow  his 
subjects  till  hitherto  to  go  to  the  coast,  probably  from 
motives  of  superstition  or  narrow  ideas,  as  if  the  en- 
trance to  his  kingdom  would  become  known  to  strang- 
ers,   and  his  suljjects  having  been  acquainted  with  the 


Danakils^  might  run  over  to  them  when  they  are  male- 
content  with  hira. 

About  five  o'clock  p.  m.  we  again  reached  the  terri- 
tory of  Adara  Bille,  and  intended  to  pass  the  night  in 
the  house  of  a  Governor  called  Edris ;  but  on  an-iving 
in  his  village  we  learnt  that  in  consequence  of  a  quarrel 
which  arose  between  him  and  his  subjects^  he  had  been 
compelled  yesterday  to  take  flight.  The  whole  village 
was  still  in  confusion,  a  circumstance  which  was  ex- 
tremely unpleasant  to  us,  as  we  had  believed  that  as 
soon  as  we  had  returned  to  the  territory  of  our  great 
friend  and  kind  host,  Adara  Bille,  our  difficulties  and 
privations  would  be  at  end.  The  behaviour  of  the  vil- 
lagers was  rude  and  daring,  and  every  appeal  to  Adara 
Bille,  to  whom  we  represented  their  proceedings,  was  in 
vain.  Our  guns,  however,  frightened  and  prevented 
them  from  falling  upon  our  baggage  like  a  vulture  on 
his  defenceless  prey.  I  foimd  it  necessary  to  put  on  a 
sentry;  and  as  my  people  were  very  tired  from  the 
fatigues  of  the  day,  I  watched  in  my  turn. 

From  the  village  where  we  had  pitched  the  tent,  I 
had  a  majestic  view  over  almost  all  the  territories  of  the 
Wollo  Gallas.  Ranges  of  mountains  run  from  south 
or  south-east  to  north  and  north-west.  Each  range  is 
separated  from  the  other  by  a  plain,  a  river,  or  a  torrent. 
Each  range  is  inhabited  by  another  Wollo  tribe,  just  as  I 
have  observed  in  the  country  of  the  Gallas  in  the  south 
of  Shoa.  The  river  or  torrent  serves  the  inhabitants 
of  the  mountain  to  defend  their  territory   against  ano- 


thcr  tribe.  The  rivers  rim  cliiefly  to  the  Bashilo, 
which  has  the  same  destination  as  the  river  Aclabai 
in  Shoa ;  viz.,  to  collect  the  tributes  of  water  of  a  few 
hundred  miles  around  and  to  carry  this  tribute  to  the 
great  lord  Abai  or  Nile.  I  must  confess,  that  the  sys- 
tem of  the  mountains  and  rivers  of  Abyssinja  always 
replenishes  my  mind  with  astonishment  at  the  wisdom 
of  Him  who  has  created  all  things  with  the  best  order 
and  organization. 

March  29,  1842 — When  the  man  who  had  accom- 
panied me  from  Tartar  Amba  had  left,  we  started  from 
the  Aillage  where  we  had  been  treated  very  rudely.  As 
our  animals  were  tired  from  the  continual  fatigues,  we 
had  great  difficulties  in  giving  them  their  loads.  Several 
mules  were  sore  and  could  not  be  mounted.  I  thought 
that  if  I  should  undertake  this  journey  another  time 
I  would  pack  up  all  my  baggage  on  horse-back,  but 
with  a  very  light  load.  I  would  be  mounted  myself  on 
horse-back,  and  my  servants  also.  A  guide  would  show 
me  the  road.  I  would  take  such  a  quantity  of  provi- 
sions that  I  should  not  be  obliged  to  halt  at  places 
where  there  is  any  danger,  and  should  I  accidentally 
fall  in  with  dangerous  people,  I  would  mount  my  horse 
and  escape.  This  is  the  only  way  of  traversing  these 
hostile  regions. 

We  arrived  at  Gatira,  the  capital  of  Adara  Bille,  at 
three  o'clock.  I  immediately  sent  my  compliments, 
and  explained  the  reasons  of  my  speedy  and  unexpected 
return.     lie  sent  word,  that   I   had   done  exceedingly 


well  in  returning  to  him,  and  that  God  had  delivered 
me  from  being  plundered  and  murdered  on  the  road  to 
Gondar.  At  the  same  time,  he  sent  some  refreshments, 
and  promised  to  give  all  that  I  wanted,  as  he  wished  to 
make  me  very  comfortable.  Can  you  fancy  this  to 
have  been  the  language  of  a  man  who  himself  was 
going  to  plunder  or  to  kill  me  in  his  own  house  ?  After 
an  hour^s  rest,  I  was  called  to  see  him ;  and  when  I  ap- 
peared, he  used  the  same  expressions  as  before,  and  ap- 
peared to  be  extremely  sorry  at  my  disappointment  in 
the  prosecution  of  my  journey.  How  could  I  suppose 
that  Adara  Bille,  whose  house  I  considered  as  my  own 
— who  always  pretended  to  be  the  most  sincere  friend 
of  Sahela  Selassieh — who  assumed  the  greatest  friend- 
liness— who  sent  every  moment  to  inquire  after  my 
wants — and  who,  in  one  word,  treated  me  vnth  the 
utmost  attention — how  could  I  suppose  that  this  man 
was  the  very  worst  man  whom  I  had  ever  seen  in  my 
life  ? 

My  people,  as  well  as  myself,  hoped  that  we  should 
in  a  few  days  be  within  the  boundaries  of  Shoa ;  but 
our  Almighty  Guide  had  intended  to  lead  us  by  an  op- 
posite road,  and  to  try  me  with  indescribable  privations, 
hardships,  dangers,  and  difficulties. 

March  30,  1842— When  I  intended  to  leave  Gatira 
after  sun-rise,  I  was  ordered  by  Adara  Bille  to  stay  with 
him,  till  he  had  informed  the  Governor  of  Dair,  and 
through  him  the  King  of  Shoa,  whether  I  should  be  per- 
mitted to  return  to  Shoa  or  not,  as  he  had  only  received 


orders  to  conduct  me  to  the  road  of  Gondar,  and  not 
that  he  should  assist  or  allow  my  return.  If  he  allowed 
me  to  start  without  the  king's  knowledge^  his  Majesty 
might  afterward  blame  him,  as  he  had  done  when  the 
brother  of  Samma-Negoos  escaped,  when  his  ]Majesty 
sent  the   message  to  Gatira,  "  INIy  son,   my  son,  why 
doest  thou  not  watch ;  why  doest  thou  allow  everybody 
to  go  thi'ough  thy  country  as  he  pleases  ?  "     I  replied, 
that  I  was  no  stranger  to  the  King  of  Shoa,  who  knew 
me  very  well,   and  who  would  probably  be  delighted 
with  my  return.     Besides,  his  Majesty  could  not  have 
any  objection  to  my  entering  his  country,  as  he  had 
stipulated  in  a  treaty  with  the  Queen  of  the  English, 
that   no   British    subject    should   be    prevented   from 
entering  the  Shoan  dominions.     But  all  my  objections 
were   in  vain,  as  Adara  Billc  declared  that  I   should 
not  move  from  Gatira,  till  he  had  received  the  answer 
of  the   Governor  of  Dair,  who  was  the   King's  repre- 
sentative on  the  frontier.     In  the  mean  time  he  would 
make  me  comfortable,  and  give  me  every  thing  that  I 
should  want.     He  then  sent  a  messenger  off  to  the 
Governor  of  Dair.     One  of  my  lads  also  accompanied 
the  messenger  at  Adara  Bille's  request.     At  the  same 
time  I  wrote  a  letter  to  his   Majesty,  and  to  Captain 
Harris,  the  British  Ambassador,    informing   them  of 
the  reason  of  my  retui*n,  and  of  my  detention  in  the. 
house   of  Adara   Bille.      But   how   much   was    I   as- 
tonished at    learning   four    days   afterward,   that    my 
servant   had  been   imprisoned  on  the  road  by  Adara 

11  5 


Billc's  Governor  of  the  frontier,  and  that  only  Adara 
Bille's  servant  had  gone  to  Dair,  where  he  most  pro- 
bably never  mentioned  my  business. 

Thinking  that  Adara  Bille  intended  to  detain  me 
for  the  purpose  of  obtaining  from  me  some  presents 
in  addition  to  those  which  I  had  given  him  on  my 
first  stay  in  his  house,  I  gave  him  several  valuable 
things,  hoping  he  would  allow  me  to  depart.  But  of 
course  after  he  had  once  made  up  his  mind  to  plunder 
my  whole  baggage,  he  was  not  content  with  these. 
His  head-wife  Fatima,  the  daughter  of  Berroo  Loobo, 
Chieftain  of  Worra  Kallo,  sent  for  a  looking-glass, 
which  she  received. 

In  the  afternoon  a  messenger  from  Berroo  Loobo 
arrived  at  Adara  Billets ;  but  for  what  purpose  I  could 
not  ascertain.  Adara  Bille  called  me  to  his  house, 
and  introduced  me  to  the  messenger,  who  was  a  man 
of  great  influence  and  favour  with  Berroo  Loobo.  He 
first  asked,  what  the  English  had  sent  to  the  King  of 
Shoa  ?  and  then  requested  me  to  see  his  master  at 
Ayn-Amba ;  but  I  replied,  that  I  \vished  to  return  to 
Shoa  without  any  delay,  as  I  wanted  to  go  to  the  coast 
of  Tadjurra ;  and  secondly,  that  I  had  nothing  to  give 
his  master,  who  vv^as  an  influential  and  great  Chieftain 
of  the  Wollos. 

March  31,  1842 — As  I  wished  to  depart  from  Gatha, 
I  went  to  the  house  of  Adara  Bille  to  obtain  permission ; 
but  I  was  told  that  the  Wodacha  was  not  yet  finished. 
I  have  made  mention  before  of  this  religious  ceremony, 


which  makes  the  people  quite  mad.  In  the  afternoon 
I  was  called  by  Adara  Bille.  I  took  the  liberty  of 
begging  him  to  let  me  go  to  Dair  or  to  Adamic  Dima, 
his  Governor  of  the  frontier,  till  the  messengers  should 
arrive ;  but  he  answered,  that  I  should  never  mention 
this  subject  before  the  arrival  of  the  messengers  ;  that 
he  was  very  sorry  about  my  delay,  but  that  he  could 
not  help  me,  as  he  was  afraid  of  the  anger  of  the 
King  of  Shoa.  I  saw  now  clearly  that  I  could  not 
rely  on  his  friendship,  and  that  he  was  going  to  play 
me  some  trick ;  but  he,  observing  that  I  w^as  dissatis- 
fied with  his  beha^^om•,  again  assumed  a  friendly  air. 

April  1 — As  this  day  was  Friday,  I  could  not  see 
the  Chieftain  before  three  o^ clock  on  account  of  the 
Wodacha,  which  he  strictly  observes.  I  had  seen  this 
morning  a  messenger  of  the  King  of  Shoa,  who  had 
lately  been  sent  to  Gondar  to  the  Etcheghue  (Head  of 
the  monks),  and  who  was  now  on  his  return  to  Shoa. 
Although  he  had  been  absent  for  five  months,  yet 
Adara  Bille  did  not  prevent  him  from  prosecuting  his 
way,  nor  state  that  he  fii'st  wanted  the  permission  of 
the  King  of  Shoa  before  he  could  depart  to  Dair ;  but 
on  the  contrary,  the  messenger  had  been  ordered  and 
encouraged  by  Adara  Bille  to  depart  immediately.  I 
mentioned  this  case  to  the  Chieftain ;  but  he  said  that 
this  man  was  an  old  acquaintance  of  his,  and  that  he 
was  the  King's  messenger,  whom  he  could  not  prevent 
from  departing  whenever  he  liked.  I  then  complained 
of  the  little  food  which  had  been  given  to  my  animals. 


which  the  cunning  robber  had  ordered  his   servants  to 
place  in  his  own  stable. 

The  proceedings  of  Adara  Bille  began  to  excite  my 
suspicions,  which  I  could  not  conceal  from  some  of 
my  most  faithful  servants,  I  thought  it  very  remark- 
able, that  wherever  I  went  I  was  accompanied  by  a  ser- 
vant of  Adara  Billc,  who  appears  to  have  guessed  what 
I  intended  to  do ;  namely,  to  escape  at  night.  Every 
movement  of  myself  and  servants  was  watched  over ; 
and  when  I  wanted  to  buy  something,  the  watchmen 
said, "  Why  disperseyouthemoney  ?"  Many  sayings  of  the 
people  coming  to  my  ears,  made  me  still  more  dubious 
of  Adara  Bille' s  proceedings.  A  man  who  begged  for 
charity  before  our  doors,  wanted  a  dollar,  which  of 
course  was  refused.  He  then  said,  "  You  do  not  know 
whether  you  will  leave  this  place  in  safety,  or  whether 
you  will  become  a  beggar  like  myself."  I  could  not 
forget  these  words,  though  I  thought  that  the  man 
had  contrived  them  to  stir  up  my  liberality. 

Under  these  circumstances  I  judged  it  proper  and 
necessary  to  secure  my  baggage  against  any  attack 
which  Adara  Bille  might  openly  attempt  upon  it,  be- 
cause I  could  not  think  that  he  would  act  so  cunningly. 
I  thought  that  if  he  had  made  up  his  mind  to  plunder  me, 
he  would  do  so  openly ;  and  for  that  we  were  prepared 
every  moment  with  our  guns,  as  Adara  Bille  was  well 
aware  of.  But  he,  observing  that  I  looked  through  his 
scheme,  feigned  still  greater  courteousness  and  amity 
than  before,  as  the  moment  was  not  yet  arrived  to 


strike  the  blow  which  he  had  prepared  against  me. 
He  sent  every  moment  to  inquire  after  my  health,  and 
procured  pronsions  for  us  in  abundance.  Sometimes 
he  sent  to  console  me  in  my  distress,  as  he  called  my 
situation,  and  that  he  was  himself  distressed  at  the 
detention  of  om'  messengers  to  the  Governor  of  Dair. 
Though  I  knew  that  there  was  much  deception  in 
these  messages,  yet  I  cou.ld  not  think  that  he  would 
carry  his  dissimulation  so  far.  However,  I  was  con- 
firmed in  my  resolution  to  escape  with  the  principal 
part  of  my  baggage.  The  sen^ants  to  whom  I  com- 
municated this  plan,  remonstrated,  by  saying,  that 
Adara  Bille  would  not  plunder  me,  and  that  my  escape 
without  any  reason  would  give  me  a  bad  name  :  how- 
ever, if  I  would  insist,  I  should  at  all  events  wait  for 
the  answer  from  Dair.  Finding  that  there  was  much 
truth  in  this  remonstrance,  I  delayed  my  intended 
flight  till  it  was  too  late  to  put  it  into  execution. 

April  2,  1842 — The  day  on  which  the  dark  clouds  of 
our  critical  situation  were  to  be  discharged,  approach- 
ed. The  work  of  darkness,  the  diabolical  hypocrisy 
of  Adara  Bille,  was  about  to  be  disclosed.  I  had  be- 
gun to  read,  for  my  edification,  the  book  called  "  Com- 
munications from  the  Kingdom  of  God,"  published  in 
Germany  by  Professor  Shubert.  The  interesting  nar- 
ratives contained  in  it  gave  me  mucli  comfort  and 
encouragement.  Having  finished  the  reading,  I 
changed  my  clothes,  as  I  found  the  old  ones  very  in- 
convenient, and  partly  worn  out.     At  that  time  I  did 


not  know  that  without  this  change  my  long  journey  after- 
ward would  have  been  still  more  painful  and  precarious. 

About  ten  o'clock  the  messengers  arrived;  but  I 
was  surprised  at  learning  that  the  Governor  of  Dair 
had  given  no  positive  answer  regarding  my  return. 
Of  course  he  had  never  been  asked  about  it.  But  I 
was  still  more  astonished  at  learning  from  my  man 
that  he  had  been  imprisoned  on  the  frontier^  and  had 
not  been  permitted  to  go  to  Dair  in  company  with  the 
servant  of  Adara  Bille.  This  circumstance^  of  which 
nobody  would  give  me  any  explanation,  increased  my 
suspicion.  When  I  asked  the  messenger  of  Adara 
Bille  about  the  answer  which  he  had  received  from  the 
Governor  of  Dair,  he  was  silent,  and  only  said,  "  You 
have  no  other  friend  or  relation  except  God." 

I  then  decided  to  escape  during  the  approaching 
night.  I  packed  up  separately  those  things  which 
were  of  value,  and  which  were  not  too  heavy,  viz  :  the 
money,  most  of  the  clothes,  instruments,  important 
papers,  &c. ;  while  I  left  the  ammunition-box,  having 
taken  as  many  cartridges  as  I  thought  would  be  suffi- 
cient on  the  road.  I  also  left  most  of  the  books, 
which  I  knew  he  would  not  touch.  I  intended  to  leave 
the  house  silently  at  midnight,  so  that  I  might  be  able 
to  reach  the  frontier  of  Shoa  about  daybreak.  I  did 
not  expect  any  resistance  on  the  frontier  on  the  part 
of  Adamie  Dima,  who  would  easily  have  been  frightened 
by  our  weapons. 

But  Adara  Bille  hastened   to   anticipate  my  plan. 


by  the  execution  of  his  artful  scheme.  He  called  me 
about  three  o'clock  p.m.,  and  said  that  the  Governor 
of  Daii-  did  not  object  to  my  retui-n  to  Shoa,  if  circum- 
stances had  prevented  me  from  proceeding  to  Gondarj 
and  that  he  had  instantly  despatched  a  messenger,  in- 
forming the  King  of  my  embarrassment  on  the  road, 
and  my  retm-n  to  Shoa.  Adara  Bille  communicated 
this  news  to  me  with  such  cheerfidness  and  confidence, 
tliat  he  made  me  hesitate  regarding  the  execution  of 
my  plan  for  the  coming  night.  He  said,  "Be  rejoiced, 
because  you  will  go  to-morrow  :  you  will  leave  me  for 
ever."  I  thought  it  prudent  to  delay  my  escape  till 
the  next  night,  in  case  he  should  not  fulfil  his  promise 
of  sending  me  off  in  the  morning.  Besides,  I  had  a 
sick  servant,  who  could  not  go  with  us  this  night.  I 
asked  Adara  Bille,  in  a  positive  manner,  whether  I 
should  be  off  to-morrow ;  and  he  swore,  by  the  life  of 
Sahela  Selassich,  that  I  should.  I  then  walked  off, 
quite  satisfied.  He  inmiediatcly  sent  a  servant  with  a 
fresh  supply  of  provisions,  which,  he  said,  would  serve 
me  on  my  road  to  Shoa.  One  hour  had  scarcely  elapsed 
before  he  sent  again,  saying,  that  if  I  wanted  anything 
more  I  need  only  point  it  out,  and  it  should  imme- 
diately be  presented  to  me. 

As  I  wished  to  depart  early  the  next  morning,  1 
went  to  bed  about  eight  o'clock  in  the  evening,  and 
ordered  my  servants  to  do  the  same.  Already  slumber- 
ing, I  was  awakened  by  a  servant  of  Adara  Bille ;  who 
invited  me  to  call  upon   him,  as  he  wished  to  take  a 


final  leave  of  me,  as  he  would  probably  be  in  bed  or 
busy  when  I  should  start  in  the  morning.  This  invita- 
tion, being  given  so  late,  puzzled  me  a  little,  and  I 
intended  to  refuse ;  but  thinking  that  this  would  be 
the  last  annoyance  which  Adara  would  give  me,  I  got 
up,  intending  to  settle  the  business  as  quickly  as  possi- 
ble. At  the  same  time,  all  the  servants  were  invited, 
except  one,  who  was  to  watch  the  baggage.  We  con- 
sulted whether  we  should  take  our  arms  with  us  or 
not ;  but  we  decided  that  Adara's  house  was  so  close, 
that  our  appearance  in  arms  would  be  improper,  par- 
ticularly as  it  was  the  last  time  we  should  see  the 
Chieftain.     We  therefore  went  without  our  arms. 

When  Adara  Bille  saw  me  entering  the  room,  he 
made  a  bow,  and  said  that  I  had  given  him  infinite 
pleasure  in  accepting  his  invitation.  The  only  reason, 
he  said,  why  he  had  called  me  so  late,  was,  because  he 
would  probably  be  busy  to-morrow,  and  unable  to  take 
a  personal  leave  of  me  ;  and  because  he  was  desu-ous 
once  more  of  my  conversation,  which  had  always  de- 
hghted  him.  He  then  asked  whether  he  could  see 
with  my  spectacles ;  and  when  I  told  him  that  most 
probably  he  could  not,  as  his  eyes  were  not  weakened 
like  mine,  he  begged  me  to  allow  him  to  tr}\  He 
attempted;  but  of  course  could  not  see  anything.  He 
then  said,  "  You  have  told  me  this  before,"  and  re- 
stored the  spectacles.  He  then  wanted  to  try  my 
boots ;  but  in  this  also  he  was  disappointed,  though  I 
had  told  him  that  every  boot  must  be  made  according  to 


the  size  of  the  individual.  Then  he  asked^  whether^  in  my 
country^  Christians  eat  with  Mahoraedans.  I  replied, 
that  there  were  no  Mahomcdans  in  my  country ;  but 
that,  supposing  there  were,  we  should  not  hesitate  to 
eat  with  them,  as  no  food  which  enters  the  mouth  can 
make  a  man  unclean,  but  that  which  comes  forth  from 
the  heart,  \iz.  plunder,  abuse,  fornication,  murder,  &c. 
He  continued  asking,  and  our  conversation  was  pro- 
longed. I  at  last  got  tired,  and  expressed  my  desire  to 
wish  him  good  night  and  good  bye.  But  he,  hearing 
this,  said,  "  Do  not  go  yet,  my  father ;  I  have  not  yet 
been  delighted  enough  :  you  must  eat  and  drink  more, 
as  you  have  scarcely  taken  anything  since  you  entered 
my  room."  After  a  few  minutes,  I  repeated  my  desire 
to  go  home,  and  then  got  up ;  when  he,  seeing  my 
intention  to  leave  him,  went  into  a  small  cabinet  behind 
the  bedstead  on  which  he  was  sitting.  As  soon  as  he 
had  entered,  his  servants  fell  upon  nic  and  my  people, 
as  if  a  signal  had  been  given  for  the  purpose.  The 
man  who  had  seized  my  arm  said,  "You  are  a  pri- 
soner :  give  surety  that  you  will  not  escape."  My 
servants,  as  well  as  myself,  were  astonished  at  this 
strange  proceeding. 

At  first,  I  took  the  whole  scene  for  an  expedient  of 
Adara  Bille  to  prove  my  intrepidity  and  courage ;  but 
I  soon  found  that  the  Wollo  Chieftain  made  no  sjiort 
with  me  or  my  people.  They  took  me  out  of  Adara's 
room,  into  a  small  house  which  had  been  already 
arranged  for  my  prison.     They  first  allowed  me,  how- 


ever,  to  see  the  small  cottage  in  which  my  servants 
were  confined.  I  was  then  separated  from  them,  and 
conducted  to  my  private  jail.  There  I  was  ordered  to 
give  np  all  my  clothes,  and  the  contents  of  my  pockets. 
As  I  hesitated  to  do  this,  my  guards  declared  that  they 
were  ordered  by  Adara  Bille  to  put  me  to  death,  if  I 
did  not  instantly  give  up  all  that  I  had  with  me.  At 
the  same  time  they  snatched  from  me  my  Abyssinian 
cloak.  I  appealed  in  vain  to  the  justice  and  friendship 
of  Adara  Bille.  "Give  up  the  treasures  which  you 
have  with  you,"  was  the  continual  clamom-  of  the 
plundering  soldiers.  "  You  must  die  immediately,  if 
you  conceal  the  least  of  your  property."  The  female 
slaves,  who  were  grinding  meal  in  a  corner  of  the 
room,  began  to  lament  and  cry  aloud.  WTien  the 
soldiers  endeavoured  to  take  off  my  boots,  shirt,  and 
trousers,  I  obstinately  refused,  till  they  at  last  desisted, 
most  probably  not  knowing  how  to  take  them  off  without 
cutting  them  to  pieces.  However,  they  examined  mevery 
closely,  in  order  to  discover  whether  I  had  any  money 
or  any  thing  else.  Unfortunately  a  dollar,  with  the  keys 
of  my  boxes,  and  my  penknives  were  discovered,  and 
immediately  taken.  Also  a  small  copy  of  the  English 
New  Testament  with  some  notes  of  the  day  was  found 
and  taken,  though  I  entreated  them  to  leave  this,  which 
I  considered  a  greater  treasure  than  any  thing  else,  as 
it  contained  the  Word  of  God.  But  whatever  fell  into 
their  hands,  they  would  not  give  me  back.  I  remem- 
bered the  proceedings  of  the  raging  multitude  toward 


my  Saviour  before  Pontius  Pilate  :  His  example  was  the 
only  treasm-e  wliich  strengthened  me  in  this  dreadful 
moment,    when  even   my   life  was    at  stake.       I   en- 
deavoured several  times  to  remind  them  of  death,  and 
the  judgment  hereafter ;  but  they  had  neither  eyes  nor 
minds   for  this  application.     "  Give  up  your  money," 
was  theii-  cry.     A  short  time    afterward,  one  of   my 
boxes,  which  they  could  not  open,  was  brought  in,  and 
I  was  ordered  to  open  it.     I  patiently  performed  this, 
when  the  box  was  taken  to  Adara  Bille,  who  examined 
its  contents,  and  afterward  sent  it  back  with  the  order 
that  I  should  shut  it  up  again.     From  that  moment  I 
never  saw  the  box,  nor  any  other  part  of  my  property. 
As  it  was  very  cold,   and  the  little  fire  was  not  of 
much  use,  I  ventured  to  ask  for  my  Abyssinian  cloak. 
A  soldier  acquainted  Adara  Bille  with  my  request,  and 
the  cloak  was  restored.     I  could  not  ascertain  anything 
of  my  poor  servants  that  night :  the  slaves,  who  were 
with  me  in  the  room,  did  not  venture  to  communicate 
with  me.     The  only  consolation  which  they  gave  me 
was,    that  I  should  not  be  murdered,   and   that   my 
people  would  not  be  sold  as  slaves,  as   I  had  expected. 
As  it  was   already  very  late,   and  being  tired   and  tor- 
mented with  anxiety,  I  lay  down  on  the   ground ;  but 
sleep   fled  from   my  eyes.     My  mind  was  engaged  in 
sighing    after   the    support    of  Ilim    who   knows    the 
afflictions  of  His  servants  and  children.     I  begged  Hini 
to  prcj)are  me  for  a  hapjiy  entrance  into  the  kingdom 
of  heaven,  if  this  should  be  my  last  night  on  earth. 


The  room  was  full  of  watchmen,  others  were  posted 
around  the  outside  of  the  house,  while  others  watched 
the  fence  and  walls,  Adara  Bille  probably  being  afraid 
of  my  escape.  A  soldier  lay  over  my  legs,  another 
close  to  my  head,  and  one  on  either  side  :  these  lay 
upon  the  ends  of  my  cloak.  Believing  that  I  had 
fallen  asleep,  as  I  made  no  movement,  the  soldiers  be- 
gan to  talk  in  the  Galla  Language,  which  they  probably 
thought  I  could  not  understand.  Some  of  them  dis- 
approved of  Adara  Bille's  behaviour,  which  would  com- 
promise him  in  the  whole  countiy ;  while  others  said, 
that  he  had  done  right  in  plundering  the  White  Man. 
Others  thought  that  I  should  be  killed,  lest  Sahela 
Selassieh  and  Ras  Ali  should  hear  of  what  Adara  Bille 
had  done ;  but  others  advised  that  I  should  be  sent  to 
the  road  of  Tehooladere  and  Yechoo,  when  I  should 
either  die  of  fatigue  on  the  road,  or  be  killed  by  the 
Raia  Gallas.  You  may  suppose  that  this  conversation 
was  not  very  pleasant  to  me ;  but  I  inwardly  said  to 
my  Heavenly  Father,  "  Men  are  all  liars ;  not  my  will, 
nor  theirs  shall  be  done,  but  only  Thine." 

April  3, 1842 — I  arose  this  morning  with  the  feelings 
of  a  prisoner.  But  I  considered  myself  a  priso?ier  of 
the  Lord,  whose  cause  I  was  sent  to  promote  in  Abys- 
sinia ',  and  resolved,  however  He  should  dispose  of  my 
life,  to  submit  with  resignation,  as  neither  life  nor 
property  belonged  to  me,  but  only  to  Him.  I  asked 
for  one  of  my  servants  to  be  admitted  to  my  prison,  in 
order  that  I  might   have   the    company    of  one   who 


could  understand  me  iu  my  afflicted  situation.  Dimtza- 
Roophael,  who  was  one  of  my  eldest  scholars  at  Anko- 
bar,  was  consequently  allowed  to  converse  with  me,  and 
to  serve  me.  Through  him  I  learned  that  my  servants 
had  passed  a  very  restless  night,  having  been  deprived 
of  nearly  all  their  clothes ;  and  that  they  had  been  put 
into  a  small  cottage,  which  did  not  protect  them  from 
the  severe  coldness  of  the  night.  The  boy  who  was 
with  the  baggage  when  it  was  plundered  by  the  soldiers 
informed  Dimtza-Roophael  that  the  soldiers  came  into 
the  room  with  lights,  took  away  every  thing  they  found, 
and  brought  them  before  Adara  Bille,  who  examined 
and  counted  the  different  articles,  and  then  sent  them 
to  his  store-house.  They  then  took  the  boy  and  put 
him  into  the  cottage  where  the  other  servants  were, 
narrowly  watched  by  Adara's  servants. 

I  entertained  in  vain  the  hope  that  I  might  find 
access  to  Adara  Bille,  in  order  to  put  him  in  mind  of 
the  assurance  of  friendship  which  he  had  given  me. 
After  sun-rise  he  departed,  in  order  to  meet  the  Gove- 
nor  of  Dair  between  Shoa  and  his  territory.  It  ap- 
pears to  be  a  custom  for  iidara  Bille  to  pay  a  visit  to 
the  new  Governor  of  Dair  on  the  frontier.  Habta 
Michael,  the  Governor  whom  I  found  in  Dair,  had  been 
appointed  by  the  King  of  Shoa  only  a  week  before  I 
arrived  there.  After  Adara  Bille  had  set  out,  I  was 
allowed  to  change  my  prison  for  my  former  house,  and 
to  converse  with  my  servants,  who  then  told  mc  what 
they  had  suffered  last  night  j  that  they  believed  that  I 


had  been  murdered^,  and  that  they  themselves  would  be 
sold  as  slaves.  Their  hearts  were  moved  toward  the 
Father  of  all  mercy  when  they  saw  me  walking  into 
their  room. 

When  the  people  of  the  village  heard  of  my  being 
still  alive,  they  came  in  great  numbers  to  express  their 
sorrow  at  my  painful  condition.  There  was  not  one 
person  who  spoke  or  acted  rudely  toward  me ;  even 
the  soldiers,  who  were  not  very  tender  last  night,  were 
now  discontent  with  Adara  Bille's  proceedings,  of  which 
the  whole  town  disapproved.  Most  of  them  wept,  and 
said,  "  He  has  neither  father,  nor  mother,  nor  friends; 
and  he  who  pretended  to  be  his  friend,  has  plundered 
him.  May  God  prove  his  friend  V  Others  said,  "  All 
earthly  things  are  perishable.  Yesterday  he  was  a 
prince  ;  but  to-day  he  is  a  prisoner."  I  took  the  op- 
portunity of  speaking  to  them  about  the  frailty  of  all 
human  happiness,  and  that  the  only  true  happiness  is 
communion  with  God. 

It  afforded  me  infinite  satisfaction  at  having  regained 
my  little  New  Testament.  The  soldier  who  had  taken 
it  from  me,  brought  it  back  to  me,  and  said,  "  Forgive 
me,  and  pray  for  me."  I  showed  it  to  the  assembled 
multitude,  and  said,  "  This  is  my  greatest  treasure, 
because  this  book  shows  me  the  way  to  my  eternal  hap- 
piness, which  no  robber  can  take  from  me." 

Several  persons  brought  me  some  food,  as  my  daily 
allowances  were  now  reduced  so  much  that  they  were 
quite   insufficient   for   myself  and   servants.     Among 


Others^  Fatima,  the  Chiefs  head  v;iie,  took  an  interest 
in  my  distressing  situation.  She  sent  a  seiTant  to  tell 
me  that  she  could  do  nothing  but  weep  ;  and  that  she 
had  endeavoured  to  dissuade  Adara  Bille  from  plunder- 
ing me,  but  had  been  unable  to  prevail  on  him.  In 
fact  everybody  pitied  me.  Only  Adara  Bille  was  un- 
pitiful,  as  all  my  goods  had  fallen  into  his  hand,  nobody 
sharing  with  him,  except  those  Mahomedan  priests  who 
pretended  to  have  obtained  a  revelation  on  the  Wodacha 
that  Adara  should  plunder  me,  IMany  persons  asked 
me  anxiously,  how  I  should  be